Open letter to WV Legislature

Dear Members of the Legislature:

I am writing to beg you to reconsider these devastating cuts that are being placed on the Title 19 Medicaid Wavier program. I am the father of two adult, mentally handicapped sons. They are the love of my heart and the light of my soul. Caring for them is my life. It is a duty that I have happily embraced and I hope to care for them for the rest of their lives or the rest of mine.

Some of my dearest friends too are also parents with handicapped children on the wavier program. Like me that have dedicated their love and their lives to caring for their children. They make sacrifices and give no thought for themselves because they love their children so much.

The wavier program has been a blessing to us all. It has helped us to keep our children at home, to care for them, to watch them learn and grow and become all they can be. Now, however, the D.H.H.R is bringing cuts to the program that would not only hurt us but hurt our children.

I know that the D.H.H.R is arguing that these cuts would allow them to help more people, but that argument is foolish and wrong. You can’t help two crippled children by cutting a wheel chair in half. In the same way you can’t help other mentally handicapped children by cutting aid to the ones you are helping now.

These terrible cuts would force many parents to send their children to institutions because they could no longer afford to care for them. This would not only cost the state more money in the end but would also tear these children out of the homes where they were loved and cared for.

I appeal then to both your compassion and your commonsense. Please do not let these cuts go through. Ask the D.H.H.R to reverse these harmful actions and to keep the wavier program the way it is allowing it to do its good work of helping so many West Virginians.

God bless you always.

Joseph Mazzella

Upper Glade, WV


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