How to be invisible in a city of 8 million have a seizure and no one notices

As I told all of you last night this morning was my first session with a new therapist, it went well and I’ll see her again.
Going well with a PTSD specialist means I had a emotional stressed out morning recounting my demons so in a short a nightmare.
To reward myself I went to my favorite watering hole. For. French fries and a beer.The coffee shop restaurant union square seats 100 with another,50 at the bar. The only space available for Zeus and I was the very end of the bar right at the back by the kitchen halfway through my lunch my aura hit it was about 1.30ish next I know the manager is asking me to quiet Zeus he was tapping the people next to me and barking .they had it seemed turned their back,three bar staff and a dozen wait staff did nothing no one saw the woman in the chair convulsing or slumped. Twenty minutes past and nothing. I have been called many things in my life but invisible is not one of them ,but today in NYC in one of the trendiest glitterati hangouts where billy connoly has his own table I achieved invisibility.for all they knew I could have died ,I thought my morning was bad enough but this freaked me the fuck out. So here I am in union square, maybe you just walked past me? Who knows I am it seems after all the invisible woman !

Chelsea Eton hotel Toronto, great rooms ,great food great service and they treat the disabled wonderfully and oh yeah the security officer Gary saves a dying man all in the line of duty

When we checked into our Toronto hotel, the Chelsea eton the welcome was wonderful, the staff were courteous and the staff will save your life literally all in a days work.

http://chelsea.eatonhotels.com/

When we arrived at our hotel we went down for a drink and noticed a well groomed exceedingly fit man in a good suit, but his style and body language screamed military, or cop and as we guessed he was a security officer for the hotel, his name was Gary Myers
Gary Myers like everyone else fell immediately in love with Zeus, and he asked me all bout how he helps me and he stated that he was proud of his hotels accessibility,he said they had made a great effort for many years to not only meet legal requirements but provide equality of joy ,equality of accessibility to all amenities for all guests irrelevant of their physical ability and he considered it his job to make sure the standard never dropped.

We have enjoyed staying here, the bars were great we made new friends and swam every day used the jacuzzi and something about the place told us we were safe.

Well this morning as we awaited our amazing wheelchair transport from dignity wheelchair transport, we noticed Gary and he asked for permission to pat Zeus and said good morning and told me how beautiful Zeus was and how lucky I was to have him. I agreed with gary about Zeus and he walked over some yards across the lobby and was talking to the head of concierge. Suddenly in my peripheral vision a tall man in his seventies or possibly even eighties suddenly fell almost as if standing at attention gripping his chest to the floor and stopped breathing.
Before he had even finished falling, in three large strides Gary cleared the distance taking off his suit coat as he did and he made a pillow of it for the man and immediately felt for pulse and checked for breath there was none. Gayr tore open the mans shirt and immediately began chest compressions while yelling for staff. The response to his yell was a well oiled obviously practiced movement of staff, oxygen appeared a defibrillator appeared and a first aid bag but Gary waited for none of this.
Gary was already giving chest compressions, yelling for the man to stay with him all the while commanding all to get into stride. The oxygen was placed on his face, the defibrillator was attached and the man was shocked, his pulse taken and again compressions continued. Gary never stopped even as the fire brigade arrived, He again commanded all , he gave the medics the mans history but never lost control, never stopped until an equally competent medical help took over. As teatment was transferred the man awoke,he was alive! he spoke and slowly he moved in front of my eyes as I awaited for a cab to meet my TV stars of my favorite show. But instead of a cab I met a real hero, I was crying as I watched and saw the man was alive, I saw Gary fist bump the concierge who had been his right hand man and calmly said good work.
My TV stars lost hero status right there, of course I like them but I had just seen a resurrection, A dead brought back to life right there in the lobby of the chelsea eton hotel toronto and when I told him I was honored to know him he coyly said”it’s my job but thank you” Gary put his jacket back on as his superior congratulated him, and all he could say was “sorry I broke my name badge” his boss laughed and said I think you just earned a new one! That he did mam, but I think superman is copyrighted but may I suggest decent caring human who goes above and beyond to save a life might be available? it should be because if you Wikipedia it It should say “see Gary Myers toronto”
What I saw today will never leave me, in his obviuos senior years I don’t know how long he has, or even how sick he is but today Gary gave him back what every time might have been snatched and to quote him “he was just doing his job”
We need more garys, we need more people who think decency caring and going above and beyond are all in a days work, but you can’t have this one the Chelsea Eaton hotel Toronto proudly claims him

Is that a bucket full of meat? No just delta loading the disabled

Yeah I know you’re all saying ” Mia delta?” I know they were assholes but Ella wanted to fly to Toronto and part of their settlement was copious free flights cash and skymiles so into the lions den again I rolled. Like all our previous flights it was planned better than the d -days landing on Omaha beach , but you know that old saying about the well laid plans of mice and men !
The air line said it was a full size jet with a roll on skywalk and to arrive by 6.30 as we would be preloaded at 7.10pm, it was even printed on the ticket.
So Ella and I loaded into the faithfull hernans limo and manhattan for JFK terminal two at 4.30pm arrived at 5.30 checked in rolled to gate 64 international departures handed the woman the afore mentioned ticket with the afore mentioned printed pre loading at 7.10pm on it and there it was that deer in the headlights ” were not delta ,were an associate we don’t load until ten minutes before at 8.20pm” came tumbling out of her mouth stunned I asked why , ” because we have to locate a lift for you” ? A lift I said? A lift she replied holding my temper I asked why ” because there are stairs” came the reply .
I showed her our booking information, full size jet, skywalk, early boarding, all guaranteed in writing ? Another deer in the headlights appeared” umm it’s a fifty seat Lear jet with ladder stairs that don’t reach the ground and you’re being loaded by forklift? Forklift???
I rolled away until 8.20pm at the allotted time we were escorted down a long, no make that bloody long dark back corridor the only thing missing was some yelling ” dead man walking” Finally we found our way out onto a dark wet Tarmac, and there was a Lear jet with a ladder that stopped three feet from the ground and a forklift with a hard hatted driver more at home in a storage facility and to make matters worse there on the front was something akin to a giant fiberglass ice cream scoop. Suddenly with Zeus on my lap a rude abusive teamsters wannabe was picking me up and pushing and groping me and shoving me into this scoop so small I had to bend almost to the waste. Then I hear an engine the forks are lifted to jet Height and he motors me across the Tarmac like so much fruit and veg at at a wholesale market until I thud against the side of the plane. Suddenly another set of hands rocks me back like a sack truck, and I am dragged to my seat in a twelve row Lear jet so small Zeus was on my lap my head touched the roof.
Whiskey foxtrot tango delta?
I am disabled not boxed taped and shrink wrapped, never again, never again.

Zeus blows my mind a bit more every day he is amazing

As a seizure alert dog Zeus is trained to respond to the first signs of any seizure activity, and when it comes to his PTSD training he trained to come close and provide comfort and companionship, and when I am sick or tired or going up a steep hill he steps in front of my chair and he helps pull me like a sled dog to the top.
He is trained to ignore other dogs, behave in restaurants and go to the curb when he needs to toilet. Most mothers I meet want to train their teenagers like Zeus.
The weird thing is for every trained response he has had months of training to achieve he received for seizure alert and PTSD, he has taught himself twice as many other behaviors and every day he helps me in a new way that no service dog trainer ever thought up.

For the last 4 years I have suffered with severely torn rotator cups, bi lateral osteo arthritis from waist to neck left shoulder to right shoulder on top of the spinal problems I already have. For the last month my rotator cups have been screaming in pain and it has got to the point where I can’t move my left arm without screaming I pain, today was no different.

Today I was sitting having coffee and when I leaned forward I grimaced, suddenly Zeus’s head popped up he sniffed the air , he ran over gently licked my arm and nudged it and slowly climbed up next to me and continued to gently touch my arm. Now we all know licking and nudging has no medical benefit, but what he was doing was a dog version of what a mother does for a child, he was kissing it better and cuddling to make it all better. The look in my boys eyes was as if he was feeling my pain it doesn’t get much better than that when it comes to a friend let alone a four legged one love you Zeus.

Hey bicyclists it is illegal for anyone over 12years of age to ride on a side walk for good reason

Yesterday after almost two weeks of being snowed in I finally broke free , ( sounds of Freddy mercury singing as I left the house) I have described to you the reader many times before if safety as a wheelchair user concerns you or your loved ones. Then go out on weekends try many cafés and restaurants until you find that one where the coffee is great the service even better and the people really care and make that you’re base. For me in New York that’s the bean on 12th and broadway for coffee and breakfast , the union square coffee shop restaurant (coffee shop is the actual name but it’s a restaurant and bar) for drinks and meals and any business meeting just ask for Carlos and tell them Mia sent you. In South Carolina it’s common ground for coffee and panini for meals in Beaufort,and in Brooklyn it’s the chocolate room .In Adelaide Australia it’s zumas.

Well yesterday using that system I caught the subway to union square for breakfast at the bean,then wheeled all the way across manhattan to Ella’s office about ten blocks then I rolled back for lunch with Carlos .
Zeus and I were making good time until we we got to the corner of 18th and broadway in union square,as I was starting the crossing two bike messengers appeared from nowhere one zipped each side and somehow knocked me so hard my chair flipped, as I was going down the steep ramp I flipped out and became airborne, as I looked down suddenly a car bonnet was under me.
in the moment I had no idea if the car was moving and thought I was about to die. Thankfully the car was parked, I slid off the bonnet to the ground. Stunned I suddenly realized Zeus had been waist leashed to me and must have flown to, I worried and looked for him but then a voice said “nice doggy” and asked me to reel him in. Ilooked and he was guarding my body and letting no one come near.
I commanded my best friend and he stood down and I was helped into my chair.
As I reached the other side of the crossing I did something I hadn’t done in years ,I sat and cried like a baby.
I was three blocks from Carlos’s restaurant so in. Total fog I rolled there . As I entered I saw people staring ,Carlos saw me then the owner asked what happened, I had landed in a puddle and it seems was sopping wet on my legs and had a red mark on my face.
The staff were wonderful And I was dry in no time and had a free stiff drink to warm me up. and was given a place where I could sit and check Zeus and give him a huge hug for being the amazing animal he is.

Now you say did the bike messengers help? No they laughed flipped the bird and rode off. Was I on their road and in the wrong ? No they were on the sidewalk and breaking the law.
This is not my first close call with these cowboys this is just the worst. If I hit someone in my chair I get in trouble, yet these notorious cowboys have been the bane of pedestrians for so long they even write them into movies and celebrate their sidewalk antics but I’m sorry I was assaulted and the bikes were the weapon what they did was a crime and they left the scene if they were in cars it would be hit and run .

Not giving them any excuse but the ramp I was on was so steep it was in no way to code,so Newyork you’re incompetence strikes again. If it wasn’t for me having my city mapped out with safe caring places to fall like the bean and coffee shop I would have been wet bruised and crying ten miles from home totally alone.
So to my friends ,find your sanctuaries know your surroundings always be safe and roll on.

I wish I was in Dixie away away in Dixie land I’ll take a stand! Yes a stand against nonADA compliant businesses down south

I recently returned from south Carolina where in Beaufort county I was fairly lucky with business accessibility for the disabled,but the sidewalks well it would be nice if they existed and where they do making them only two foot wide with the light poles in the middle isn’t antebellum it’s anti disabled and downright illegal.

Now being a damn yanky technically, I didn’t want to start another war of northern aggression again so I didn’t say much.today however my group of southern belle friends in charleston said it all for me. one by one Marka Danielle , Brenda brown parent and several others who are charleston based wrote on Facebook of ramps blocked by cars, ramps that lead nowhere and no ramps at all no matter how many times the owners were told made me feel not so yanky If you think the non existent ramps were bad enough,the non existent disabled bathrooms were the last straw and left we who have wheels under our ass without a pot to piss in literally.

The south in certain parts may wish they were a seperate nation,but until that day they’re American and they’re in breach of the Americans with disabilities act .
So good ol boys get with the law and care for we the people,or there just might be some federal aggression hitting your bank accounts in the form of federal fines.

Are you dis or otherwise abled and live in New York City? Here’s how to lodge a grievance under the ADA

About DoITT: Equal Employment Opportunity & Diversity

NEW YORK CITY DEPARTMENT OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY AND TELECOMMUNICATIONS POLICIES PROHIBITING DISCRIMINATION

Consistent with Federal and New York State laws, New York City Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications prohibits discrimination in program activities, procurement and contracting against any person on the basis of disability.
Grievance Procedure under The Americans with Disabilities Act
This grievance procedure is established to meet the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (“ADA”). It may be used by anyone who wishes to file a grievance alleging discrimination on the basis of disability, for the provision of services, activities, programs or benefits by the New York City Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications (“DoITT”).
The grievance should be in writing and contain information about the alleged discrimination such as name, address, phone number of grievant and location, date, and description of the problem. Alternative means of filing grievances, such as personal interviews or a tape recording of the grievance will be made available for persons with disabilities upon request.
The grievance should be submitted by the grievant or the grievant’s designee as soon as possible but no later than 60 calendar days after the alleged violation to:

Emily Johnson
ADA Coordinator
255 Greenwich Street, 9th Floor New York, New York 10007
Tel: 212-788-6600
Email: adacoordinator@doitt.nyc.gov

Within 30 calendar days after receipt of the grievance, Emily Johnson or her designee will contact the grievant to discuss the grievance and the possible resolutions. Within 15 calendar days of the contact with the grievant, Emily Johnson or her designee will respond in writing, and where appropriate, in a format accessible to the grievant, such as large print, Braille, or audio tape. The response will explain the position of DoITT and offer options for substantive resolution of the grievance.
The grievant or the grievant’s designee may appeal the decision by Emily Johnson or her designee within 15 calendar days after receipt of the response to Rahul N. Merchant, DoITT Commissioner or his designee. The appeal must be submitted in writing, or where appropriate, in a format accessible to the grievant, such as large print, Braille, or audio tape. A response to the appeal will be provided to the grievant within sixty (60) days after the receipt of the request for the appeal.
All responses by DoITT will be in writing, and where appropriate, in a format accessible to the grievant, such as large print, Braille, or audio tape.
All written grievances, appeals, and responses received in connection with a grievance made to the DoITT, will be retained for at least three years.

NEW YORK CITY DEPARTMENT OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY AND TELECOMMUNICATIONS POLICY PROHIBITING DISCRIMINATION ON THE BASIS OF DISABILITY

It is the policy of the New York City Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications (“DoITT”) to comply with all applicable laws including but not limited to, the Americans with Disability Act, Rehabilitation Act, and all New York and Federal Laws. DoITT does not discriminate on the basis of disability in admission to, access to, or operation of its programs, services or activities.
Customers and clients who need auxiliary aids or staff assistance for effective communication in order to apply for or participate in programs and services of DoITT are invited to make their needs and preferences known to their primary contact person in the department that provides the program or service. They may make known their need for other disability-related accommodations necessary to apply for or participate in any DoITT program service or activity. They may also attach such notice to the front of any application.
This notice is provided as required by Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.
Questions, concerns, complaints or requests for additional information regarding the ADA may be directed to DoITT’s ADA Coordinator:
Emily Johnson
ADA Coordinator
255 Greenwich Street, 9th Floor New York, New York 10007
Tel: 212-788-6600
Email: adacoordinator@doitt.nyc.gov

These notices are available in large print, on audio tape, and in Braille, from the ADA Coordinator, upon request.

NOTICE UNDER THE AMERICANS WITH DISABILITIES ACT

In accordance with the requirements of title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, New York City Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications (“DoITT”) will not discriminate against qualified individuals with disabilities on the basis of disability in DoITT’s services, programs, or activities.
Effective Communication: DoITT will generally, upon request, provide appropriate aids and services leading to effective communication for qualified persons with disabilities so they can participate equally in DoITT’s programs, services, and activities, including qualified sign language interpreters, documents in Braille, and other ways of making information and communications accessible to people who have speech, hearing, or vision impairments.
Modifications to Policies and Procedures: DoITT will make reasonable modifications to policies and programs to ensure that people with disabilities have an equal opportunity to enjoy all DoITT programs, services, and activities. For example, individuals with service animals are welcomed in DoITT offices, even where pets are generally prohibited.
Anyone who requires an auxiliary aid or service for effective communication, or a modification of policies or procedures to participate in a DoITT program, service, or activity, should contact Emily Johnson, ADA Coordinator at: 255 Greenwich Street, 9th Floor, New York, NY 10007 or by email at adacoordinator@doitt.nyc.gov or by phone at (212) 788-6600, as soon as possible but no later than three (3) business days before the scheduled event.
The ADA does not require DoITT to take any action that would fundamentally alter the nature of its programs or services, or impose an undue financial or administrative burden. Complaints that a DoITT program, service, or activity is not accessible to persons with disabilities should be directed to Emily Johnson, ADA Coordinator, at 255 Greenwich Street, 9th Floor, New York, NY 10007 or by email at adacoordinator@doitt.nyc.gov or by phone at (212) 788-6600.
DoITT will not place a surcharge on a particular individual with a disability or any group of individuals with disabilities to cover the cost of providing auxiliary aids/services or reasonable modifications of policy, such as retrieving items from locations that are open to the public but are not accessible to persons who use wheelchairs.

Disabled veteran confronted by Starbucks employee about service dog

STARBUCKS IS AT IT AGAIN THEY HAVE THE NUMBER 1 WORST CORPORATE BAD RECORD WHEN IT COMES TO TREATMENT OF THE THE DISABLED, BOTH CUSTOMERS AND EMPLOYEES

Reposted from a story online by Drew Karedes / KHOU 11 News

HOUSTON — A disabled U.S. army veteran says he was confronted and embarrassed at a Houston Starbucks because of his service dog.

Yancy Baer is sharing his story in hopes of educating others. He is still adjusting to his life as an amputee.

Doctors discovered he had bone cancer after a non-combat related injury in Iraq in 2009. His left leg from the knee down had to be amputated.

“You go through the low points and high points,” explained Baer.

He experienced one of those high points 14 weeks ago. That’s when Baer got his physical service dog, Verbena, through a national organization called Canine Companions for Independence.

The organization trains service dogs and provides the canines to disabled people.

Baer traveled to Houston from San Antonio this week to share his experience on behalf of the organization.

He traveled to a Starbucks at 5535 Memorial Drive on Wednesday for a meeting. He wasn’t expecting the greeting he received at the coffee shop.

“A gentleman from Starbucks meets me at the door and says I can’t have her in the store,” said Baer.

Baer says he explained that Verbena is his physical service dog.

“He stated, you’re not blind,” recalled Baer. “It was in your face, loud and bold. I got really nervous. I was shaking because I was being confronted.”

According to Baer, the employee continued to confront him in front of a store full of customers.

“I explained what all she does, and his next comment was, ‘Why can’t you do that yourself,’” said Baer.

Baer remembers a customer standing up for him.

Eventually, he spoke with another employee and got his point across. The employee who stopped him at the door did apologize about what happened.

“People with disabilities, you can’t always see those disabilities. You never know what a service dog is for,” said Baer.

Baer was wearing pants at the time. He believes the employee wouldn’t have made such a big deal had he been wearing shorts.

He hopes others learn that a person with a service dog doesn’t need to have an obvious or visible disability.

“Be careful about who you approach and how you approach it. You’ve got to be sensitive to people,” said Baer. “This isn’t acceptable. It can’t be acceptable.”

Baer says he holds no hard feelings toward Starbucks as a company.

Starbucks corporate spokeswoman Laurel Harper released the following statement to KHOU:

“Starbucks always welcomes service animals to our stores, and this customer’s experience is not consistent with the welcoming and friendly environment we strive to create for everyone. We have spoken with this customer to apologize for his experience, and we hope to have the opportunity to serve him again. We have also spoken with our store partner about this situation and used this as a coaching opportunity for the future.”

contrary to the staatement above starbucks has a terrible attitude with the treatment of the disabled below is one or six

http://disabledaccessdenied.wordpress.com/2012/04/29/starbucks-screws-up-disabled-rights-again-this-time-youll-think-i-am-kidding/

http://disabledaccessdenied.wordpress.com/2011/04/01/starbucks-doesnt-want-disabled-bucks/

http://disabledaccessdenied.wordpress.com/2011/08/19/starbucks-update-starbucks-pays-for-saying-no-to-dwarf-employee/

http://disabledaccessdenied.wordpress.com/2011/04/24/starbucks-it-seems-its-not-your-first-rodeo-at-disabled-discrimination/

When will British Columbias Government learn? when Paul Caune speaks listen Because the voting public do!

Paul Caune tells us “Disabled needs no secret to BC Government”
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Paul Caune is the executive dirctor for Civil Rights Now!

Disabled people and their families should not be tricked into “stakeholder engagement”

By Paul Caune

The BC Government wants to know what are the needs of the disabled. The disabled need the government to stop pretending it doesn’t know the answer to that question.

The stated purpose for wanting to know what are the needs of the disabled is that it will lead to BC becoming the most progressive place for people living with disabilities in Canada.

This goal may sound familiar to any old-timers reading this column. One of the five goals for a Golden Decade that the BC Government set for itself in 2005 was to “build the best system of support in Canada for persons with disabilities, those with special needs, children at risk and seniors.”

Many of my previous columns have demonstrated the alarming state of seniors, children at risk, and people with disabilities living in BC. Of course, the BC Government has read all the reports that justify me describing the state of those vulnerable people as “alarming.” I say “of course” because the reports I’m referring to were written either by the Government itself or by officers of BC’s Legislative Assembly.

The BC Government knows that, starting in the late 1990’s, it was sued by tax-payers who wanted to get science-based treatment for their children with autism covered by the Medical Services Plan. The Government knows it fought these tax-payers for five years, losing in the lower courts but, sadly for children with autism, winning in the Supreme Court of Canada. The BC Government knows it made sure that the best place on earth would not to be the most progressive place in Canada for children with autism.

The Government of BC knows that from September 2006 to July 2007 it had a consultation with the public called the “Conversation on Health”, during which many people with disabilities told the Government what they needed. There are pages and pages of summaries of what people with disabilities and their families stated during this Conversation on the BC Government’s website.

The Government of BC knows that in 2009 a lawsuit by former residents of the Woodlands institution forced it to financially compensate some of the former residents of that institution for the abuse of them by civil servants.

I have to write “some” because the Government knows it has refused to financially compensate the former residents of Woodlands who left that institution before August 1, 1974—hiding this cruelty behind a legal technicality.

The Government of BC knows that during the last three years it has received waves of complaints from parents with adult children who are clients of Community Living British Columbia (CLBC), the crown corporation responsible for funding services for adults with developmental disabilities. As recently as November 2011, the Chair of the Board of CLBC admitted to the Government that CLBC had “lost sight of its core values.”

It is very telling that the stated goal of the BC Government is to make this province the most progressive place in Canada for people living with disabilities. Why not make British Columbia the most progressive place in the world for people living with disabilities? Because a standard using the rest of Canada is setting the bar abysmally low. With such a standard, even a tiny improvement of the current system will give the Government a pretext to brag that they’ve made BC the most progressive place in Canada for disabled people.

Also, if the BC Government ever decided to make this province the most progressive place in the world for people with disabilities, it would crash into what is commonly known as “reality”. The United States, Australia, New Zealand, the UK and many Scandinavian countries have laws and services for the benefit of the disabled which are better than their supposed equivalents in British Columbia.

The BC Government is not ignorant of what disabled people need. It knows how badly it has treated disabled people since the nineteenth century. But the Government’s priority is how to dodge having to act on the facts.

Experience has taught the Government that many disabled people and their families are suckers for what Public Relation fraudsters call “stakeholder engagement.” Stakeholder engagement is a magic show intended to create an illusion of democracy. And like all magic shows, stakeholder engagement only works if the audience wants to be fooled.

Here’s some advice for BC’s disabled and their families: if a PR vampire calls you a stakeholder, drive a stake through its heart.

Paul Caune is the Executive Director of CIVIL RIGHTS NOW! Contact him at civilrightsnow@yahoo.ca or CRN’s website

Tags: British Columbia, Disabled, featured, Paul Caune

Cameron Mannix – BC health system fails disabled man

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VCH and CLBC pass buck at expense of Cameron Mannix

By Paul Caune

The case of Cameron Mannix is an example of systemic failure. Cameron has lived with his mother, at home in Squamish, his entire life.

He is a 19-year old man who was born with developmental disabilities. Fourteen months ago, however, he suffered a medical crisis and was admitted to Lion’s Gate Hospital, in North Vancouver, B.C. There he has remained.

Cameron’s mother wants him home.

He has been in the hospital for fourteen months because VCH and Community Living B.C. (the crown corporation which funds services for adults who have developmental disabilities—it was created for this purpose) have failed in their responsibility to put Cameron first. (“People first” is the motto of VCH.)

There’s been a media report about the medical crisis of Cameron Mannix. This column is an attempt to put this report in proper perspective for the benefit of my readers.

Sometime after the admission of Cameron Mannix to Lion’s Gate, he received a tracheotomy. He now needs more help than he needed before he was admitted. This help can be given to him at home. But yet he remains in the hospital.

It is safe to assume that a good reason why is because of false assumptions made by the medical professionals in regards to what is possible and necessary for people with disabilities who have complex needs.

They most likely assumed that the best place for Cameron Mannix to live was not his home, but George Pearson Centre, the only long term residential care facility in VCH which will admit people who have been trached. (VCH has 6,000 residential care beds, but as a matter of policy they will only admit people who are trached to the 114 beds in Vancouver’s George Pearson Centre.)

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Paul Caune, in an image taken from the film Hope Is Not A Plan.

Based on my personal experience, it is safe to assume that the decision makers at Lion’s Gate do not know it has been the policy of the Government of BC since the 1970′s not to institutionalize children or adults who have developmental disabilities. CLBC, in fact, has approximately 13,700 clients, many of whom have needs as complex as those of Cameron Mannix, and none of them live in long term residential care institutions.

One reason they do not live in institutions for people with developmental disabilities is that all such institutions in BC were shut down two decades ago. They were replaced with community living. It possible that the VCH decision makers know this is true but experience has taught them they can do whatever they want.

Instead of helping Cameron’s mother prepare to bring him home, and to get the services which he needs to live at home successfully, VCH and CLBC have dragged their feet for months and months. They claim that Cameron Mannix, on one or two occasions, pulled out his trach. Therefore, they have tied his wrists to his bed or wheelchair.

I am going to speculate as to why CLBC has dragged its feet. I think it is likely that there has been an unwritten decision by CLBC to not oppose placing of adults with developmental disabilities who have complex needs into long term residential care facilities intended for seniors.

Why?

Any CLBC qualified adult with developmental disabilities put into a long term residential care facility means less money which CLBC has to spend, since the residential care would be funded through health care dollars.

VCH and CLBC are trying to pass the buck to each other, at Cameron’s and the taxpayer’s expense. This happens frequently in the best place on Earth.

Paul Caune is the Executive Director of CIVIL RIGHTS NOW! Contact him at civilrightsnow@yahoo.ca or his website