Groups Serving Individuals with Disabilities in New Jersey Join Forces to Ensure Key Services Are Preserved in FY2021
Organizations serving New Jersey residents living with disabilities release a joint statement to Governor Murphy & New Jersey lawmakers to preserve funding in FY2021.
Trenton, NJ – The more than 2.3 million New Jerseyans living with disabilities* and their families are counting on the state to do the right thing and protect funding in FY2021 that enables them to live fulfilling, healthy and stable lives in New Jersey’s communities. The state’s most vulnerable citizens cannot be traded to address the state’s budget shortfall brought about by the pandemic.
PRESERVE OUR SERVICES
Preserve Services for New Jerseyans with Disabilities in Fiscal Year 2021:
Funding for essential services provided through state agencies that protect and support New Jersey residents living with disabilities must be fully preserved in FY2021.
More than two million New Jerseyans living with disabilities and their families are counting on the state to do the right thing and protect funding in FY2021. There can be no cuts to services and supports that enable residents with disabilities to live healthy, stable and fulfilling lives in New Jersey’s communities. The well-being of the state’s most vulnerable citizens cannot be jeopardized in order to address the state’s budget shortfall brought about by the pandemic: cuts to services now only saves money in the short term and will likely result in increased institutional need long term. People with disabilities and their families are already more likely to experience housing, food, and economic insecurity, which has only been magnified by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Even with modest funding increases from the State in recent years for providers serving children and adults with intellectual/developmental disabilities and/or behavioral and mental health issues, funding has failed to keep pace with rising costs associated with delivering life-sustaining services and maintaining adequate staffing. The financial fragility of service organizations has been compounded by the pandemic with added costs for staffing, personal protective equipment and enhanced cleaning protocols required to keep everyone safe. Any cut in funding, especially now, would have a devastating impact on residents with disabilities, their families and the communities they live in.
*Disability & Health U.S. State Profile Data for New Jersey (Adults 18+ years of age), Centers for Disease Control.
About the Disability Agencies Issuing the Press Statement
This budget statement has been signed by agencies that serve, support and advocate for individuals with disabilities in New Jersey.
The Alliance for the Betterment of Citizens with Disabilities (ABCD)
The Arc of NJ
New Jersey Association of Mental Health and Addiction Agencies (NJAMHAA)
The New Jersey Council on Developmental Disabilities (NJCDD)
The Supportive Housing Association of New Jersey (SHA)