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LETTER: Public needs to speak out about SCI

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To the Editor:

I am shocked and appalled at how low our public officials will stoop. As the owner of an Adult Family Home, I was frustrated when my funds were again cut to the point where I may have to close my doors.

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This has been a continual tactic of Northern Bridges, the fund-managing organization put in place by the state of Wisconsin to arbitrarily decrease funding to people with disabilities.

Imagine my surprise and dismay when I heard the county board supervisors of St. Croix County are trying to close St. Croix Industries. This organization provides employment, community inclusion and many other services to people having developmental, physical and mental disabilities.

S.C.I. was a vibrant revenue generator, with surplus funding through 2014; decreasing reimbursement rates by the state of Wisconsin put them in the red. Now St. Croix County supervisors want to transfer S.C.I. to a private company. Really?!

That means that we will have no oversight or influence over the programs needed by our most vulnerable individuals in our population. Will they be employed, and if so, will they have transportation? What about inclusion in the community?

Will parents and caregivers be able to continue in their jobs or will they have to quit and stay home to care for these people whose independence we are yanking away. How does this help Wisconsin? It doesn't!

We need to stop the war against the poor and vulnerable. If you spent last Sunday in church, now is the time to stand up for the "least of His children."

Stop this resolution by contacting the St. Croix County Board supervisors or your state representatives. The meeting is June 4 at 7 p.m. at the St. Croix County Government Center. I hope I will see you there.

Hazel Cain-Johnson

Somerset

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