Friend Calling for DOH to Align Covid-19 Guidance on Group Homes and Day HAB Programs with the CDC

Assemblyman Christopher S. Friend (R,C,I-Big Flats) is urging the state Department of Health (DOH) to align their COVID-19 guidance for group homes and day habilitation programs with that of the Center for Disease Control (CDC). Currently, state policies are prohibitive enough that it limits the number of people who can be served by such programs.

“I urge the DOH to take action soon to update their guidance on group homes and day habilitation programs so that more New Yorkers with developmental disabilities can be served by these important programs,” said Friend. “The state has been sluggish in updating COVID-19 policies in numerous areas, even though the CDC has been loosening restrictions in response to more Americans being protected from the virus. New York is in a far different and better place than it was last year, our guidance must reflect this.”

Of the recent changes, the CDC no longer requires a quarantine period for vaccinated individuals who are exposed to COVID-19 in non-healthcare congregate settings. This would apply to group homes and day habilitation programs. DOH recently said it is in the process of reviewing the new CDC guidance, but in the meantime program participation is limited because of the restrictive guidance still adhered to in the state. These programs are important for self-actualization for these New Yorkers and ensure integration in communities throughout the state.