Earlier this year I was, like many members of the Ryther family, engaged in correspondence with various governmental officials about reimbursement rate justice for Ryther. In one exchange I was responding to assertions by some officials that a rate adjustment was not warranted for a variety of bogus reasons. I was informed by one official that I was “taking this too personally”. Since I know a brush off when I see one, I did not make any further attempts to persuade this individual of the error of his thinking.
It has occurred to me that the core of our problem with the Washington’s government is the sentiment that budgetary problems that adversely affect the well-being of seriously disturbed, abused and neglected children should not be taken personally. Never mind that not getting the care and services these children receive have demonstrable negative personal consequences, I was essentially admonished to disregard their short and long term futures because they created difficult political situations for some involved officials.
I do want to make one thing very clear, not a single elected Representative or Senator of any party has voiced such a calloused and ill-informed attitude when presented with the facts about the state of reimbursement to providers of services (Ryther and other providers are reimbursed at the same level that existed in 2004).
I have come to the conclusion that in the face of such indifference I must continue to take my duty personally and seriously. Anything short of that dismisses and devalues the lives of these children who, for the most part, have been treated shabbily by the State.
I hope that others will become as personally committed to effectively meeting the needs of these children.