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Son's care at group home criticized



Published: Fri, July 29, 2005 @ 12:00 a.m.



The man's father said the home should be forced to improve its conditions.

MERCER, Pa. -- A Hermitage couple came to the Mercer County commissioners' meeting Thursday night to complain about their son's treatment in one of the group homes that contracts with the county. Larry and Sue Snyder have a 31-year-old son who is blind and mentally handicapped.

Larry Snyder said he does not believe that the Behavioral Health Commission and County Mental Health/Retardation Department should rely so heavily on parent advocates to identify problems with providers. He said that he was told he has the option of moving his son to another group home but that he cannot find one with the necessary equipment for his son's care.

He said the group home should be forced to rectify its problems.

Snyder also said he feels his son had been unfairly charged for use of a television that he is unable to watch and said he questions several other charges that he feels should have been part of the room and board.

He said his son was also abruptly cut off from physical and speech therapy and other services that had earlier been deemed necessary. He said he believes there is just cause for commissioners to cancel the provider's contract.

Meeting a resolution

The Snyders declined to publicly identify the provider but said they have been trying for two years to solve the problems.

Commissioner Olivia Lazor said she was aware the Snyders had met with the state, which is in charge of auditing the facility. She said nothing was found out of order.

She said commissioners are administrators but cannot deal with the details of individual cases.

Commissioner Michele Brooks said commissioners will meet with Mental Health/Retardation Administrator Catherine Main to find a resolution to the problem.




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