Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Emotions Run High as Group Home Denied

Seems as if NIMBY is alive and well. Despite the slowing of group home development, the attitudes and fears continue at full speed.

HERRIN, Ill. -- More than 80 people — including about 20 who were standing — packed the Herrin City Council meeting Monday, the topic drawing high emotions.
The council had to decide whether to overrule the city’s zoning appeals board and grant a special use permit to The H Group to use a house it purchased as a group home for four developmentally disabled residents.
Speakers on behalf of the group home included Mayor Vic Ritter, Alderman Elizabeth Issler and even a resident of the subdivision where the home is located. She said she and most of her neighbors would not have signed petitions against the group home if a meeting had been held first so they would have known the facts.
A disabled veteran from Marion asked if he could be refused the right to live in his own subdivision because he suffers from service-related stress. His impassioned speech brought the crowd to its feet in tribute.
But in the end, only Issler and Alderman Robert Craig voted for the special use permit; the other six aldermen voted against allowing the home.

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