Families fear ‘heartbreaking’ cuts in disability programs
Matt Gaffney had trouble living in a group home for people with disabilities like himself. He’s nonverbal and suffers from multiple conditions: severe autism, bipolar disorder, chronic gastrointestinal issues. In group homes, Matt, now 42, had his medications ‘‘raised to higher levels,’’ says Sue Gaffney, his mother. And she... Read more
A deal that changed lives — but not for all
For a year of her life, Linda Ferguson lived in a booth at a transit stop. She spent another year living under a bridge. Her homelessness, she says now, “was a bad situation. Nobody likes to be outside. It’s a very insecure feeling.’’ At one point Ferguson, who deals... Read more
Amid pandemic, state’s mental health agency has extensive layoffs
Budget cuts due to the COVID-19 economic crisis have led the state’s mental health agency to lay off 200 employees. The jobs included positions in each of the state-run hospitals, regional field offices, and central office. The layoffs are part of a $123 million budget reduction for the Georgia Department of... Read more
Worrisome budget cuts ahead for the state’s health programs
The five support centers for people with mental health problems provide a good financial return for Georgia, their leaders say. The centers, funded by the state,  prevent hospitalizations in state facilities, which can cost $600 a day, and offer other services for thousands of Georgians, says the Georgia Mental... Read more
Budget cuts for mental health, disabilities alarm patient advocates
“The safety net is stretched to the max.’’ Judy Fitzgerald, commissioner of the agency that oversees mental health and substance abuse services, gave that stark assessment in January to state legislators who were considering budget cuts to her department. Now, even deeper cuts are on the table. Georgia’s budget... Read more

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