Since April 1, the coronavirus has claimed five lives of four adults with developmental disabilities living in Rhode Island group homes and one group home caregiver.

But some young people have chosen to work on the front lines during the pandemic to help feed Rhode Islanders and keep up with an aggressive cleaning regimen adopted by nursing homes and other congregate care settings.   On Friday, via video-conference, they showed policy-makers what federal and state Medicaid support can accomplish.

Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo will include a second round of pay raises for front-line workers in home healthcare and developmental disability services when she presents her next budget proposal to the General Assembly on Thursday.

Raises will help make Rhode Island more competitive with Massachusetts and ensure “we have the highest quality people taking care of our Rhode Island families,” Raimondo said in her State of the State address Tuesday.

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Gina Macris

Gina Macris is a career journalist with 43 years’ experience as a reporter for the Providence Journal. She retired in 2012. While at the Journal she wrote two series about her first-born son that won prizes from the New England Associated Press News Executives Association. Gina now publishes the Developmental Disability News.