Family wants more answers, transparency from a local group home

WILLIAMSVILLE, N.Y. (WIVB)- The Adams adopted their daughter Wendy when she was four. The now 48-year-old is blind and non-verbal.

“We didn’t have much choice when we had to place Wendy in a group home, it bothered us immensely,” Clayton Adams, Wendy’s father told News 4.

Wendy lives in a group home in Williamsville run by Aspire of Western New York.

Almost a year ago, the Adams got a call Wendy suffered a minor injury, burns to several fingers on her left hand.

“They said it was discovered at day program but they don’t know if it happened at day program, if it happened at the house,” said Pamela Adams, Wendy’s mother.

The Adams were only notified of the burns after Wendy was taken to the doctor.

News 4 spoke to an Aspire spokesperson, who didn’t want to go on camera. They told us protocol was followed; they are legally required to notify families of an injuries within 24 hours, which they claim they did.

Pamela said the fact that Aspire staff couldn’t tell her how the injury occurred is not acceptable.

“There seems to be very little consistent follow through,” Clayton said.

According to a corrective action report from Aspire, the staff member was “re-trained to notify family prior to doctor appointments when an individual has an injury.”

Pamela said there have been other causes for concern; how to properly guide a blind person, she said, didn’t appear to be known by some staff.

“One person grabbed her by the back of the neck and steered her around,” she explained.

Their concerns were investigated by Aspire internally. Aspire would not provide copies of their internal investigation, but told us they made changes to alleviate some of the Adams’ concerns, like upping Wendy’s supervision.

“They’re going to fall back on the fact that they can’t question Wendy specifically to find out what she wants to say,” Clayton said.

“Basically it’s a nonverbal individual against an organization that is obviously going to try to defend itself.”

 

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