• Petitioning Stevenson University
  • Responded

This petition will be delivered to:

Dr Kevin J Manning, President
Stevenson University
State Rep. Jon Cardin
See response
State Rep. Dan Morhaim
State Rep. Dana Stein
State Sen. Robert Zirkin

Include a permanent tribute to the former residents of Rosewood in plans for the future of the property.

    1. Amy G Kozak
    2. Petition by

      Amy G Kozak

      Baltimore, MD

We are asking that our elected officials, The State of Maryland (specifically the Departments of General Services and the Environment), and Stevenson University include a permanent tribute to the former residents of Rosewood, who suffered human rights abuses across its 121-year history, in the plans they are creating for the future of the property.

As if the documentation “of rape, abuse, neglect, overcrowding and unsanitary conditions” during Rosewood’s operation, and the additional civil rights abuses that were summarily reported during the period leading up to its closure in 2009 weren’t enough, Slate’s recent article exposes even more horrors.

As recently shared in a blog post, the author of this petition vividly remembers visiting her brother David at Rosewood. A couple of years ago, in an attempt to honor her brother, she tried to film at Rosewood for a documentary. Instead, she found “no trespassing” signs and security patrolling the property. Upon trying to navigate the bureaucracy to film there legally, she couldn’t. She initially learned that Stevenson University and the State of Maryland were locked in negotiations over Rosewood’s future because the property is environmentally hazardous. 

Today, information about a timeline for remediation and construction still isn’t easily obtained, and we collectively fear that the public is locked out of the decision making process entirely; hence this petition.

Many of us were happy to learn the decision was finally made to close the Rosewood Center back in 2009, but that victory will continue to be a hollow one so long as our community’s memory of what occurred at Rosewood continues to crumble along with its now neglected buildings; or even worse, is covered over and forgotten once new construction is completed.

The current and future custodians of this site have a moral obligation to erect and maintain a memorial grove and monument (or the like) that recognizes the lives of the many people in both the recent and distant past whose lives were damaged and even destroyed by an institution that had been built on the pretext of protecting them. Additionally, this tribute should serve as a continual reminder that we should never again warehouse our most vulnerable. 

Stevenson University, Dr Kevin J Manning, President
State Rep. Jon Cardin, Maryland-011A
State Rep. Dan Morhaim, Maryland-011B
State Rep. Dana Stein, Maryland-011C
State Sen. Robert Zirkin, Maryland-011
Include a permanent tribute to the former residents of Rosewood in plans for the future of the property.

[Your name]

Recent signatures


    1. Decision-maker Jon Cardin responds:

      Jon Cardin

      If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me at jon@joncardin.com.

    2. Decision-maker Jon Cardin responds:

      Jon Cardin

      Hello Amy and hello to all who have signed this petition. I applaud your efforts to keep the memory of the Rosewood residents alive. Their lives should not be forgotten and we should never allow such inhumane cruelty to take place again. ...

    3. Featured Story

      Amy G Kozak
      Petition Organizer

      We'd like to thank our petition signees who found us through the "Spread The Word To End The Word" campaign site, and we encourage anyone who's interested in sharing their story or learning more to do so: http://www.specialolympics.org/Stories/All_Stories.aspx

    4. 100!

      Amy G Kozak
      Petition Organizer

      Thank you to everyone who has taken the time to sign. I'd also like to thank both the Maryland Developmental Disabilities Council & the Maryland Disability Law Center for helping to spread the word about this petition. This isn't over yet!

    5. Reached 100 signatures
    6. Media

      Amy G Kozak
      Petition Organizer

      Wanted to let you all know that I've reached out to Slate, The Baltimore Sun, and The Baltimore Business Journal. Rosewood hasn't been in the news in a while and I think it's time!

    7. To clarify

      Amy G Kozak
      Petition Organizer

      I'm "liking" the comments here because I think it is important to share your opinion, story, and thoughts. Thank you all for your bravery.

    8. Reached 50 signatures
    9. Video added to this petition!

      Amy G Kozak
      Petition Organizer

      Please take a moment to watch, and feel free to share with others.

    10. Reached 25 signatures


    Reasons for signing

    • Greg Pirmann BARTO, PA
      • 21 days ago

      I worked at Pennhurst Center in PA and have been active with a group that wishes to memorialize the lives of the people sent there. To date our only success has been the placement of an historical marker on the highway near the campus. Small victory, but a victory nonetheless. Good luck.

    • James Conroy HAVERTOWN, PA
      • 22 days ago

      A group in Pennsylvania has a similar goal for Pennhurst. We have a common mission.

    • connie scotto-sheffert PARKVILLE, MD
      • 6 months ago

      It should be important to everyone. It's not asking much just a rememberence for those that suffered.

    • Michele Nelson COCKEYSVILLE, MD
      • 6 months ago

      I am a mother of a child with autism and a speech language pathologist working with children with special needs. It is important to remember how the residents of Rosewood were treated because those who do not remember history or bound to repeat it. I can not imagine my son or any of the sweet children I serve enduring such abuse and neglect.

    • Crystal Stephens BALTIMORE, MD
      • 6 months ago

      Rosewood was nice place to live.


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