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Jon Pfeiffer Cover Story

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Jon Pfeiffer Cover Story

Postby DedeTate » Mon Jun 02, 2008 10:34 am

I'm curious about others' reactions to the Jon Pfeiffer story. It states the case that Dane County should provide rent subsidies, but the article as a whole seems to leave a lot of questions unanswered. The article reports that his mother has paid around $150,000 to keep him out of jail at various points, and she "bitterly" comments that local authorities want him in jail because it's the cheapest place to put him. But it doesn't explain why he doesn't live with her. Or near her.

Maybe I just don't understand the full implications of traumatic brain injury, but the numerous stories of Pfeiffer's violence towards social workers and cops gave me pause in terms of the argument that the County should help pay for him to live on his own, without supervision.
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Postby jjoyce » Mon Jun 02, 2008 11:32 am

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Postby snoqueen » Mon Jun 02, 2008 5:08 pm

What I got from the story is the guy needs help to live anyplace. The numbers don't work when he tries to earn enough to pay for his own rent. He can live in a nursing home but says he hates it (who wouldn't? He's a young man, not a 90-year-old) and wants a chance to live independently.

The other choice seems to be jail, and he ends up there with some regularity due to the trouble he has living in supervised settings with lots of rules.

What's the solution?

The cheapest solution to me looks like a subsidy to help him live in his own place, along with somebody to check on him. It's a lot cheaper than nursing homes and jail.

Where will/should the money come from?

I think that's the question the article raises. His mom's comment is very much to the point: there will always be some people in society who need assistance. Whether it's their own fault or nobody's fault (consider Down Syndrome people) they still need extra care, and as families get older and parents die off, we'll see more people in the same boat. Blame has nothing to do with it -- we've got a problem to solve, and it needs solving in a manner that is at once fair and kind, and economically responsible.
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