Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Vanguard Landing, a choice or same pattern of segregation in Virginia?

I spoke a city council meeting 10.8.13

As a person with a disability and an employee of Moms in Motion, a waiver facilitator that assist many Virginians with disabilities live in their community, I'm confused and angry over the opening of Vanguard Landing.

While I realize people deserve home care options, I believe seclusion and segregation is never the answer. Those two factors are dangerous. If you were to look at the history of people with disabilities, you will find, again and again, a pattern of segregation and abuse. I'm not only referring to physical abuse but corruption of the internal care system that will surely happen in the future.

Why are we continuing to make the same mistakes? Why do the founders of Vanguard Landing think this is best option, when very recently the Department of Justice came into Virginia and said the (secluded) Training Centers had to be closed immediately? Isn't that a heads up to parents that these places are dangerous?

The answer to caring for people with disabilities can be found by studying Disability History.
I invite everybody listening right now to my Disability History presentation on October 21st at 6:30 in Norfolk at Hope House hosted by The Arc of South Hampton Roads.

I believe in small group homes sprinkled throughout our community.
I believe in strengthening home care support so anybody with a disability can live at home.
I believe everybody should live in their community, near or with their loved ones.
Segregation is not the answer. It never was and never will be.

A conversation on my Facebook


Released March 9, 2014
New York Times Documentary: The Men of Atalissa

Produced by Kassie Bracken, John Woo and Dan Barry, "The Men of Atalissa" is the evocative, haunting story of a few dozen men with intellectual disability who lived in an old schoolhouse on top of a hill. For more than three decades, they were an integral part of an Iowa farming community, worshipping at the local churches, dancing at the local bars, working at a nearby turkey-processing plant; they were affectionately known as "the boys." But none of their neighbors knew of the day-to-day abuse the men endured in that schoolhouse on the hill.

The Iowa community had no idea of the abuse going on inside the bunkhouse.
“I’ve been in the building back when it was nice.”
“Never heard them complain.”

Video  |   Article   |    A conversation on my Facebook



  1. awesome. Ivy!
    I will definitelyt share this!

    So glad you had the chance to speak with them!

  2. I appreciate your perspective, Ivy! I'm not familiar with Vanguard Landing, but I am familiar with a host of programs in the Baltimore/Washington area. Organizations buy homes in communities (usually upscale), and provide 24/7 assistance for people who are not candidates for living at home. In-home support is also a strong component. So, I'm glad to see these ideas alive and well in Virginia. Thanks for your blog. I look forward to more.

  3. I am a client of Moms in Motion. you of all people are exposed to the large scale that encompasses people with disabilities. what works for you doesn't work for everyone. we should all be open to helping each other and not judge. I support Vanguard Landing. fighting people who are helping the disabled seems a waste of time. if you want to fight someone, go at the people who don't care about the disable. that seems a better use of your time. with respect, mary ann

  4. I believe in options too. But not the same pattern of segregation and seclusion that has been practiced for so long. It’s dangerous and wrong. Learn about how people with disabilities can be supported in their community. Place Matters is a short documentary about individuals with disabilities moving out of Virginia's training centers into the community. http://youtu.be/W8HiFarXlX8

  5. Ivy your blob concerning Vanguard landing was perfectly said. It would put people with disabilities at a disadvantage by housing them in an environment where they will become venerable to become mistreated. People have a hard time understanding this. The community offers protection .A scenario I use often goes like this: If a mother abused her child and she didn't want others to know she would keep the abused child away from anyone who might say something about the child's bruises ect.Thus the child would be secluded . No one would have a clue.
    I have worked in situations where I have been aware of agencies protecting themselves and feel that the community offers the best protection to the safety to people who fall into the hands of others who were thought to be there to protect them. I will continue my fight and hope to speak to others in advocating for people with disabilities.

  6. I believe that your decision will be the best, you will not regret it.

  7. I just want to know when this thing will be built. They keep asking for money but there hasn't even been a ground breaking since I've heard about this for the past three years. Is it a scam?

    1. If it’s never built, legally do they have to give back the fundraising money?
      I don’t think it’s a scam, they just hit the wall on many things, in my opinion.