Monthly Archives: April 2024

Comments Off on Autism Families and Housing Crisis – Now What?

Alright – so, for decades now, autism families have been struggling with housing. As we all know, autism is a developmental disability and often children have behaviors that causes self-injury and property destruction. Even for my own self, we have had more water damage and floods than I can count. I remember, one night while I was sleeping, I heard water running and thought it was raining outside. Nope, it was our home being flooded. I finally realize, run to the bathroom and my kid is just chilling in bathtub overflowing having the best sensory time.

This is our life and is 100 times worse for families who rent and do not own their own home. I see it at least weekly if not more a family who is being bullied by some kind of an apartment management. Families being evicted because of their children’s autism – what can be more heartbreaking. Yes, there are federal laws that is supposed to protect them, but often our families do not know about it or understand it well enough to fight back.
They are vulnerable and public housing entities take advantage of them time and time again.

Last year, we spoke with the Somali legislators and asked if they could do something. Nothing was done but maybe someone can take on this fight and advocate it harder. No, not me. I am really trying to retire. I am tired and I have zero desire to go back to the capital at all.
If you are a family who is being threatened, bullied, or intimidated by public housing, section 8 or even a privately owned property, you have rights if your child has autism. Please contact Homeline and the department of housing and urban development to file a complaint. You have the right to ask for and get reasonable accommodation for your child. You have the right to ask and get environmental accessibility adaptation to whatever you are renting. Learn what your rights and responsibilities are and do not let these blood sucking housing management folks intimidate you. You are not alone.

The best thing is to see if you can get your own home then you can safely modify it to meet your child’s disability without any crappy outside voices or hindering issues. There is EAA that can help with home safety modifications and now we even have one Somali EAA assessor and Contractor, yay!

The above words do not reflect any candidate, agency, or committee.

Idil – Somali Autism Mom & Trying to Retire Advocate

Comments Off on Bud Rosenfield – We Lost a Giant Advocate for all Minnesotans with Disabilities – Sooooo Sad

Alright – so, even though Bud passed away almost a year ago, I am having a hard time digesting it. I know he is in a better place, but this had hit me very hard. Bud was by far one of my favorite people in Minnesota. He was extremely smart, articulate, kind, funny and soooo passionate about and for people with disabilities. He knew disability laws more than anyone I have ever seen.

He had an unbelievable ability to recall every detail about every disability law, how it came about and everything in-between. My last conversation with him was last year. I called him to learn more about the process of MN choice assessments. I remember telling him he was now a hotshot who rubbed shoulders with the governor. You see he was appointed by Gov Walz to head the state’s ombudsman’s office. And, he said to me “even though I am a hot shot now, I still answer your phone”. So true. No matter who you were Bud answered your call and helped you. Whether you had GED or PhD, Bud was treated you with respect and kindness. I will sorely miss Bud and his mind.

During my autism advocacy, there isn’t one single issue that I did not get advice from Bud. One of my most memorable times was when we met with CMS and DHS via phone, this was before Zoom was popular. Bud simply told both the federal and state agency that unless low-income autism families were going to get equal and fair treatment in how services were offered – he will sue them. He was rare, honest, brutally honest, did I say kind, smart, kind, detail oriented, and so much more.

Bud, you will be missed by millions of disability families in Minnesota and across the country. May you rest in peace.