Living independently next door to your family

An Australian rental property company has created a business model that caters to young adults with intellectual disabilities and their family caregivers helping them learn independence. ” An article on Australian news outlet ABC.net.au explores why the arrangement appeals to certain tenants. “The Kemira model is so new it’s not easy to categorise. It straddles three categories: aged care, independent living, and disability accommodation,” writes journalist Norman Hermant.

Power outages in Florida led to 8 deaths at same nursing home

Officials in Hollywood, Florida have opened multiple criminal investigations into the deaths of 8 nursing home residents who died Wednesday morning from heat exhaustion during an ongoing power outage caused by Hurricane Irma. The New York Times is reporting that “More than three million customers in Florida still lacked power Wednesday, including roughly 160 nursing homes, according to the state’s tracking system.” Hollywood local paper The Sun-Sentinel is reporting 115 other senior residents at the home were evacuated from the overheated facility, but their relatives remain confused about their health status.

Housing Shortage for Those With Disabilities

According to a new report from Harvard, those with disabilities are facing numerous challenges in finding accessible rental housing in the U.S.. The Atlantic details the problem, writing, “Landlords by and large won’t invest unless they are receiving federal funds in return for making these changes, and developers are held only to relatively small quotas when constructing new buildings.” Read more

New York Times

The Architecture of Autism

Housing initiatives designed for adults with autism are springing up around the country. This New York Times report focuses on Sweetwater Spectrum, a $10.4 million project in the heart of California wine country. Sixteen adults spanning the full range of autism reside at Sweetwater, where they cook, plan social activities, exercise and learn to live “a life with purpose.” Read more.

The Washington Post

“Bank of America settles loan discrimination charges”

Bank of America has settled a lawsuit brought by customers with disabilities who were seeking loans on home mortgages between May 2007 and April 2012, The Washington Post reported Friday.

The customers who filed the lawsuit would not have been required to pay higher interest rates on mortgage loans or face any other increased financial burden beyond that of non-disabled applicants. Rather, the plaintiffs claimed that they were asked to provide documentation regarding Social Security income not required of other applicants, the story states. As the article details, Bank of America has faced similar allegations of discriminatory loan practices in the past. In this case, however, the bank says they were not breaking federal law and that the settlement decision was made only to mitigate litigation expenses, according to the article.