Monday, August 10, 2015


Staffing continues to be an issue at Daughter's house.   Before vacation, I congratulated Home Owner for getting through a staff change without Adult Protective Services involvement, as had happened in the previous 2.  In the first case, staff quit unannounced, packing and moving out while all the residents were at their programs.  There was no one to let them in when the buses dropped them off, and when they couldn't reach the Home Owner, they ended up calling the police and APS was involved.  In the second case the staff member was not happy when a second live-in staff member arrived, as it meant she could no longer get away with making Daughter do things like her laundry, or warming up the van, or....  So she convinced the women to claim the new staff member was abusing them.  On that one, APS showed up at the church while I was meeting with a family to plan a funeral.  AA came to see if I was available, otherwise she would have sat in on Daughter's interview with the worker. 

The most recent staff change happened when Home Owner walked into the house and found the staff person screaming at the residents.  She was fired on the spot, and Daughter and I were both relieved.  She had a tendency to taunt Daughter and do other things that were not helpful.  She did not like when Daughter disrupted her schedule by coming home late after choir or some other outing with me.  This new staff member seems to be an improvement, though there are still issues.  She doesn't  always measure Daughter's food properly, and when one of the other residents became extremely difficult, she began complaining to Daughter.  This has been an issue before.  Daughter is so high functioning that they come to view her as a friend rather than a resident. 

The ongoing staffing issues are hard on Daughter and all the residents.  They need schedule and routine, and with the ongoing turnover, that is difficult to establish and maintain.  As a society, we do not value the developmentally handicapped.  Home Owner recently spent the night in a waiting room with a resident-- she needed psychiatric hospitalization, and they were seeking a bed for her.  No hospital in the state would take her.  They weren't "equipped" to deal with her needs.  They ended up sending her back home, where she continued to be disruptive. 

I try not to think about the reality that Daughter will most likely be dealing with staffing issues for the rest of her life.  I worry about the individuals who don't have a guardian who can be a strong advocate for them, or who are unable to communicate what is going on in the home.  I never dreamed I would be parenting this actively at this point in my life.  I'm grateful I can continue to be a strong advocate for Daughter. 

No comments: