Woman With Disability Battles Mother Over Independent Living
In a hotly-contested case, a court is set to decide whether a 28-year-old with Down syndrome or her mom should determine if the young woman lives in a group home or with her friends.
Margaret “Jenny” Hatch has been living in a group home since last summer after being placed into guardianship against her will. The Virginia woman had previously lived semi-independently, for a time with her friends, Jim Talbert and Kelly Morris.
Hatch says she wants to return to Talbert and Morris’ home, but on Thursday a judge transferred the woman’s guardianship from a nonprofit organization to her mother and stepfather.
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“No!” Hatch reportedly proclaimed as the temporary guardianship decision was announced in court. Under the wishes of her parents — from whom court documents indicate she may be estranged — Hatch is now expected to remain at the group home, with a May trial date set in the case.
Local Down syndrome advocates say they hope to see Hatch able to live in the least restrictive environment possible, reports the Newport News, Va. Daily Press. To read more click here.