Legislation sponsored by Senator Robert Singer (R-Ocean) to help individuals with special needs live more independent lives was advanced by the Senate Health Committee.
Legislation sponsored by Sen. Robert Singer to help people with special needs live more independent lives was advanced by a Senate panel. (©iStock)
“Individuals with special needs can live normal lives. They just need a chance,” Senator Singer said. “I think we can give them that chance by providing them more opportunities for housing in assisted living facilities across the state.”
The legislation, S-1058, requires the Commissioner of Health to enter into contracts with three existing assisted living facilities – one in each of the northern, central and southern regions of the state — in order to house a minimum of two to four residents with special needs. The commissioner would also be required to plan for the construction of three new assisted living facilities which will be dedicated for use by individuals with special needs.
The bill with inspired by a program at the College of New Jersey which allows students with special needs in a certificate program to live in supervised apartment-style housing. There was a desire to ensure these students wouldn’t lose their freedom when they returned home.
“This program is a great example of what these students can achieve if they can get the help they need,” Senator Singer said. “These individuals deserve a chance to live more independent lives.”
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