Michener Centre (Red Deer, Alberta) is home to 125 persons with disabilities, my sister, Jody Kvern is one of them. And like my sister, most of these sweet, vulnerable (aging) people have spent the majority of their lives up at Michener. The provincial government announced (suddenly) on March 10, 2013 that they are closing the Michener Centre and moving these highly, vulnerable people out into community programs.
My sister spent ten years out in the 'community inclusive' programs where the staff is underpaid with little or no training in dealing with the specialized needs of their clients, as well as the alarmingly, high turnover rate of staff, which, for their clients is difficult at best, devastating in some circumstances. In my sister's case, she went from a relatively happy-go-lucky person at Michener to an anxiety-ridden individual with escalating behaviors while out in the community.
She has been back in Michener's kind, excellent care for the last decade with expert staff, some who have known her since she was first admitted at age six; she's now 55. And in my opinion, not up to the challenge of moving back into a community, which has neither the means, nor the experienced, longterm staff to provide her and her peers the specialized care they need. I'm asking for signatures, I'm asking for support in the hopes that Premier Alison Redford will keep Michener Centre open, and allow both my sister and her peers the chance to lives out their 'golden' years in the expert care they need and so deserve. I hope you can help with this wee matter of Michener. Please add your name and your voice, your two cents worth for these 125 remaining residents, who can't speak for themselves. Please keep Michener open. Thanks for your kind time.