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Thu Jul 18, 2019, 06:44 AM

Disabled residents bear the brunt of state cuts as services are scaled back on the Peninsula

Patty Ozella likes to think about the way one Hampton womanís face would light up when Ozella helped her get one of those ordinary chores of daily life right for the first time ó but that's help the Hampton-Newport News Community Services Board can't offer any more.

A financial squeeze at the board, caused by new state policies, means the kind of help for people with developmental disabilities that has been Ozellaís lifeís work for decades now has to come from other agenciesó who donít know those people the way Ozella does.

Ozella, a veteran CSB employee, was there for the Hampton woman when she decided she wanted to drive a car. They went down to the DMV together to pick up a driverís manual. They read it together ó well, Ozella mostly read it to her, since the woman didnít read that well.

Ozella was there for her when she took the test to get her learnerís permit and barely failed. She was there for her to deal with the disappointment and to help find other ways to get around. She would have been there if the woman had earned the learnerís permit and needed help finding a driving instructor, or even for the much bigger challenge of figuring out how to afford a car.

Read more: https://pilotonline.com/news/government/politics/virginia/article_5b3703ce-9ccd-11e9-a2c8-f3c2f60de34a.html

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