Under the direction of Governor Pat Quinn, Illinois is closing another state facility for people with severe developmental disabilities. He shuttered the Jacksonville Developmental Center last year. Next, is the Murray Developmental Center, in Centralia. But he admits, he has never been to either.
Governor Pat Quinn was walking toward the Capitol Thursday when he was confronted by Rita Winkeler.
"It is not safe, one size does not fit all," Winkeler says.
"Well I understand that," says Quinn.
Winkeler's son, Mark, is 28-years-old. "He functions like a nine-month old, has an IQ of twelve, needs total round the clock care, diaper changing, feeding, clothing," says Winkeler.
Like the kind care she says he gets at Murray. Winkler says Quinn might realize that if he ever saw it firsthand. But the governor has never actually visited Murray Center, or the Jackson Developmental Center.
"No. I have not. I've seen plenty of information about it," says Quinn. "I made a decision based on what I think was right for the people of Illinois, it's not an easy decision but a necessary one.” Quinn favors moving developmentally disabled individuals out of institutions, and into smaller, community homes that he says maximize freedom and independence.