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Willowbrook Mile

Commemorating the Willowbrook Mile

Thirty-five years ago, on this day, the Willowbrook State School was shuttered, signaling a new day for people with developmental disabilities. It was the courageous reporting of Geraldo Rivera, aided by a brave young named Bernard Carabello, that led to its closure by exposing the failure of a system that relied heavily on mass institutionalization of people with disabilities. Mr. Rivera’s expose 50 years ago launched a multi-year effort to change the service delivery system, leading ultimately to the closure of 20 institutions across New York State over 30 years in favor of community living.

The history and the mission of the Office for People With Developmental Disabilities is irrevocably intertwined with the history of the Willowbrook State School. This agency was born out of the strong and heroic advocacy of family members and people with developmental disabilities to ensure better treatment and better services for people within their communities and ultimately led to the end of institutionalization.  

BA.5's fast rise to dominance: 5 things to know about the omicron subvariant

Mackenzie Bean and Erica Carbajal

The omicron subvariant BA.5 is quickly gaining prevalence in the U.S. and now accounts for nearly 54 percent of all cases, according to the CDC's latest variant proportion update for the week ending July 2. 

On June 25, CDC estimates showed the strain accounted for about 37 percent of cases. It's closely related to omicron subvariant BA.4, which is estimated to account for nearly 17 percent of cases. BA.4 and BA.5 have become known as "sister variants" since they were first discovered in South Africa last winter. Collectively, they make up 70 percent of U.S. cases, estimates show.

Lifespire Commemorates 70 Years of Giving Hope

Lifespire commemorated crossing its seventh decade of support to over 100,000 New Yorkers with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities on November 29th, 2021.  

“We are 1,000 professionals working together in teams to provide remarkable services for a population that is growing at the rate of 3% annually. By blending professionalism with an empathetic agility, Lifespire helps to provide the highest quality of living to people supported,” stated Thomas Lydon, Chief Executive Officer. “The deep stress, anxiety and confusion that surrounds our situations has been relentless. But each person in Lifespire’s agency has taken serious steps to fill the gap by working together to gain greater awareness, to expand capacity and bring greater clarity to its mission.”  

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at kkarpe@lifespire.org 212 741 0100 ext. 4570.

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