STATEHOUSE (Feb. 20, 2019) – The House of Representatives supported State Rep. Denny Zent’s (R-Angola) legislation that would provide essential care to children with disabilities from military families.
Zent said military families face unique challenges that can be difficult, especially for a family with a child with disabilities. According to the U.S. Department of Defense Education Activity, the average child in a military family will move six to nine times during their school years. Zent said that this can be an issue, particularly for children with special needs because it can result in delays and loss of essential care.
“We have an obligation to our service members to protect and care for their families while they protect and take care of us,” Zent said. “Military families move frequently, and this process often results in children with disabilities losing their critical support services. It is essential that we do right by our active military and provide their children with the timely care they need.”
Zent’s proposal would prioritize access to the Family Supports Waiver and shorten the wait time for military children with disabilities, providing critical support and care. According to Zent, the waiver allows states to provide meaningful home and community-based services to persons with a developmental disability, intellectual disability or autism and who have substantial functional limitations, allowing these children to live independently with their families.
In addition to expanding coverage and improving care for active military families, Zent’s bill would further incentivize talented service members and veterans to live and work in Indiana.
“Other states have already prioritized directing care to the children of active military families,” Zent said. “This is a commonsense measure to help veterans and their families, while attracting more service members to work in Indiana.”
State Rep. Denny Zent (R-Angola) represents House District 51,
which includes most of LaGrange and Steuben counties.