Friday, June 24, 2011

R.I. Protesters Decry Proposed Budget Cuts

PROVIDENCE, R.I. — They came on foot and, in some cases, in wheelchairs, gathering more than 250 strong at the State House on Thursday to protest budget cuts they say will hurt one of Rhode Island’s most vulnerable populations — people with developmental disabilities.
"My son Patrick is multi-handicapped and lives in a group home in Middletown," Cynthia Feighan, one of about a half-dozen speakers, told the crowd that gathered in the State House rotunda. "He needs help getting dressed, going to the bathroom. Someone needs to prepare his meals and help him eat his meals. He needs help getting into bed, getting out of bed, turning on a radio, turning it off."
But with the House of Representatives poised to vote Friday on a budget that would cut spending for developmental disability services by about $24 million, according to figures from the advocates, Feighan and others wonder what will happen to their loved ones.

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