Cuomo’s other negligence crisis | The American Conservative



Mike Carey isn’t surprised that Governor Andrew Cuomo failed to protect vulnerable New Yorkers in nursing homes during COVID. As shown in emails, he and others warned Governor Cuomo’s office of a crisis in March 2020.

“If you, the governor and all the other senior NYS mental health officials continue to ignore our whistleblower complaints,” Carey said in an email to an officer for the Department of Developmental Disabilities in New York on March 23, 2020. Regarding the coronavirus pandemic, your negligence could lead to the catastrophic deaths of people with disabilities, as well as government and private caregivers. “

Carey knows firsthand how New York Governor Andrew Cuomo deals with the most vulnerable in New York State. Fourteen years ago, his son Jonathan died in a group home after being abused by an employee. Jonathan Michael Carey “was developmentally disabled, he had autism and he was non-verbal and only 13 years old when he was killed. Almost all dozen of safety and abuse prevention laws, as well as the critical 911 Civil Rights Bill, have been prevented from enacting laws by the Cuomo administration, which runs the mental health system, ”Carey said in a recent press release on the anniversary of his son’s death on Jan. February.

Carey’s story was featured in a number of articles in the New York Times in 2011; The advertisement prompted Governor Cuomo to proclaim that he would act to eradicate abuses in about a thousand group homes for the mentally handicapped across New York state. Cuomo founded the judicial center that was supposed to take over all investigations into abuses in these houses.

According to Carey, Cuomo’s solution did not solve the problem, it only exacerbated it. He claims the justice center buried most of the complaints, while accused domestic workers of the group were shuffled from one house to another. He has watched Cuomo’s government act with impunity, often ruling by order of the executive branch, and refusing to provide data on complaints of abuse in group homes.

Carey was one of several New York whistleblowers featured in a 2018 documentary entitled Whistleblower. “It’s not documented, it didn’t happen,” he said in the documentation. “This agency is a complete scam,” Carey continued, referring to the justice center. “Corrupt to the core and literally bury thousands of cases every month.” Criminal cases. “

He then explained the process by which the state buried these cases. “The state bypasses the emergency call systems and bypasses them. So if you are a victim of a sex crime, the call will be transferred to an internal state abuse hotline by the assigned reporter. You forward the complaint directly to the institution where the state crime took place. “He said,” Then they basically give the facility all the time and the ability to move and destroy the evidence. “

In 2018, Cuomo fired Jay Kiyonaga after committing “inappropriate and sexually inappropriate acts” against female subordinates, according to a 2018 year New York Post Items. He then became the administrator of the Justice Center for the Protection of People with Special Needs.

Carey said in the documentary that he believes a third of the residents of these group houses continue to be sexually abused in them. The state paid $ 3 million to the family of a boy who was ill-treated in one of these homes in 2018. According to a press release from Carey, the perpetrator called the house “a predator’s dream”. “The lack of supervision there made it easy to do what I did,” he said of the group’s home system under Cuomo. “I could have stayed in this house for years and abuse it every day without anyone noticing.”

Now that Cuomo’s controversial decisions regarding his state’s elderly and disabled citizens are being scrutinized during the coronavirus crisis, whistleblowers like Carey are realizing the same patterns they have been worried about for years. In fact, they warned Cuomo’s government early and repeatedly that New York State’s most vulnerable people would not be protected from COVID.

“Dear Commissioner Kastner, why is the OPWDD sending vulnerable medically frail people from houses of the OPWDD group and non-profit organizations to daily programs during the COVID-19 outbreak?” A whistleblower emailed March 11, 2020, asked: “OPWDD has trained me to take proactive approaches to situations that could endanger the health and wellbeing of our individuals.”

“Dear Commissioner Kastner and everyone else in responsible positions. People with disabilities MUST have minimal protection, like everyone else, ”stated Carey in another email dated March 11, 2020. EMERGENCY MEASURES MUST BE TAKEN NOW TO PREVENT DEATH. “

As with the widespread COVID deaths in nursing homes, the extent of abuse in homes for the disabled was initially masked, with relevant data hidden. Carey said he only figured out how far the group’s home crisis had gone after filing numerous Freedom of Information Act requests and putting the data together himself. Similar to COVID, the Cuomo administration took important steps to control the flow of information and declined repeated FOIA requests as Carey continued to ask for data for justice center abuse numbers.

“Dear Records Officer Delia,” Carey said in an email on July 20, 2020, “as you well know, your response is in direct violation of NYS FOIL law. The PUBLIC information I have requested is just a push of a button away. “

Carey was able to get enough data early on to show that abuse in group homes remains a major problem. In a 2016 FOIA inquiry, Carey asked how many reports the complaint-handling hotline had received since it was set up on June 30, 2013. The response stated that the hotline had received 18,145 well-founded complaints and another 37,474 unfounded complaints. “

Carey, in analyzing the current data he has been able to collect, said he estimates this hotline continues to receive approximately 8,000 complaints a month.

Damning Justice Center Foil (1) by mikekvolpe on Scribd

An email was not returned to Governor Cuomo’s press office.

Michael Volpe has been a freelance journalist since 2009 after spending more than a decade in the financial sector. He lives in Chicago.


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