2009-03-31 webmail to David Price

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I am helping my friend Sandy with placing her 16-y.o. autistic son, Josh Smith, in a group home.

One major roadblock we have run into is this:

(1) the group homes require a funding source.

(2) the only sources of funding open to us are CAP-MR/DD (Medicaid) and SSI (Social Security). Josh has been on the CAP waiting list for many months, and we were expecting that he would be awarded a slot in November, but there were delays and eventually the allocations were frozen in January due to the financial crisis.

(3) Sandy has applied for SSI for Josh before (in 2007), but because she has $17k in emergency savings (HH Bonds), Josh was automatically disqualified.

(4) It has been made clear, however, that she *cannot* pay cash for a group home: Josh's case manager insists that "No one takes private pay", so she cannot even use those emergency savings to pay for a group home until they are gone (at which point Josh would presumably qualify for SSI).

Josh desperately needs placement in a group home and we desperately need him to be in one, but he is actively being denied access to one due to this Catch-22 situation.

Sandy has an appointment to re-apply for SSI on April 14, and we plan to appeal the likely negative decision, but I wanted to see if you could perhaps shed some light on how we are supposed to get Josh into a group home under these circumstances.

Sandy will be happy to sign a Constituent Assistance form if that would be helpful.

Thank you in advance,

Nick Staddon