Friday meeting to focus on why CT nonprofits are in crisis mode

A local legislative breakfast on Friday will highlight the impact of state funding cutbacks for nonprofit agencies, including the Kennedy Center, which provides programs for those who are mentally disabled or have other special needs.

The Kennedy Center’s Legislative Breakfast will take place Friday, March 6 from 7:30-9 a.m. at Chip’s, 57 Monroe Turnpike (Route 111), Trumbull.
Family representatives and individuals affected by the cuts in services for people with disabilities will speak at the event.

“Is the state truly prepared for the ramifications of the loss of nonprofit service providers?” asks Kennedy Center publicity material for the event.

“Nonprofits all over Connecticut are experiencing a threat to their existence with the state of Connecticut’s recent budget cuts,” says the Kennedy Center material.

Deficits, lower wages, more efficient

According to the Kennedy Center:

— 73% of nonprofits with budgets of $1 million or more ended with a deficit in 2009.

— At many nonprofits supporting people with disabilities, more than 65% of employees are earning $12 per hour or less. State employees doing similar work are paid more.

— Without nonprofits, the cost to taxpayers would be 2.5 times greater to provide a public community living arrangement for people with disabilities.

— While the consumer price index increased 8.5% over the past five years, the cost-of-living-adjustment (COLA) for nonprofits increased 1%.

— Annual costs for services provided in private agency settings are about one-half the cost of the same services provided in public-sector settings.

“More than half of nonprofits are operating dangerously close to their margin and likely would not be able to maintain operations if they experienced unforeseen increases in expenses or a financially detrimental incident,” according to the Kennedy Center publicity material.

About the Kennedy Center

The Kennedy Center is a nationally accredited, nonprofit rehabilitation organization that serves 2,300 individuals annually. The agency strives to offer innovative, comprehensive service options to persons with disabilities and special needs, from birth to their senior years.

Based in Trumbull, it operates 26 community experience programs, 16 group homes, an industries program composed of six businesses, supported and competitive employment and job placement services, a family support and respite service, travel training, and a variety of children’s programs.

Learn more at