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Residents Split on Opinion of Group Home in Minooka

A proposed Cornerstone Services group home in Minooka has residents concerned about safety, property values and worried that village officials are not being open and honest about the project.

Editor's Note: Watch the site in the coming days for additional stories on this issue.

Meredith June 02, 2012 at 10:02 PM
Jim B. - My comment addressed the fact that illegal use of drugs is an exception and would be a valid argument for opposition.
Meredith June 02, 2012 at 10:15 PM
Kristy - If there weren't opposing opinions it wouldn't be a debate. You are welcome to your opinion. So am I.
Michele Houchens June 03, 2012 at 01:54 AM
This whole discussion makes me so sad on so many levels. I am a life long Minooka resident. I have a son with mental illness. He did not show any of the symptoms until he was a sophmore in college. We had no earlier indications that this would happen to us. The facts are you can not control who buys or builds a home by yours... as long as they are following the village code. Beside that you never know what type of person or family are moving in by you.. A good friend has always said if you always want a corn field next to you .. you better buy it! On another theme there are so many levels of mental illness... you probably know people who are being treated but you can't tell. The individuals who are allowed to live in these homes are so carefully screened and if there is a problem they are removed. You probably know and could never actually tell many individuals with bipolar disorder or schizophrenia. I recommend you educate yourself by visiting www.nami.org
Cedgar June 03, 2012 at 04:47 PM
I look forward to seeing these kids at the grocery store, at the park, at the ice cream shop, etc. Glad they are being given the chance to live in this home.
Cedgar June 03, 2012 at 04:49 PM
Good points, Tim.
Cedgar June 03, 2012 at 04:59 PM
Good points, Michele. Most of the neighbors will welcome the home openly; some will peer through their own blinds and just wait for anything they can holler about. Can't stop that, I guess...things will eventually settle down and it will all work out.
Juanita Jones June 04, 2012 at 12:28 AM
kat1574 is truly a WITCH - change that to a capital "B" How dare you!!!! Look in the mirror and find what a despicable human being you are! Your children must be very proud to have a mother like you - NOT!!! They must be one of the bullies that are enrolled in our schools. You should be VERY ashamed of yourself for posting such garbage. You truly are rotten to the core and I am VERY happy to NOT live near you. I count my blessings on that one.
Juanita Jones June 04, 2012 at 12:33 AM
Did anyone ever consider that Meredith is right!! Did anyone ever check the Sex Offenders list - maybe one is living right next door to you! I'd say that is more dangerous than a child with disabilities.
Juanita Jones June 04, 2012 at 12:35 AM
Thanks Michele - your comments are great!
Juanita Jones June 04, 2012 at 12:38 AM
Kat1574 needs anger management! What a waste of a human being! Take that back - not human at all!!!!
Juanita Jones June 04, 2012 at 12:50 AM
You are one neighbor that I would be afraid to live next door to. To talk about one of your neighbors that way is horrible. You should be very ashamed of yourself. Your children should also be ashamed of you. Shame - Shame on YOU!!!
Juanita Jones June 04, 2012 at 12:55 AM
I applaud Tim S.!!!!!!!!! Kat1574 is an ignorant woman! Very, Very HATEFUL!! I feel for anyone living next door to her.
Juanita Jones June 04, 2012 at 01:14 AM
Venom spews from you mouth!!!! I feel very sorry for YOU!! And your family! Your anger and venom needs to be controlled!!!
Juanita Jones June 04, 2012 at 01:33 AM
I don't know who Meredith or Tim S. are - but maybe you should keep your mouth firmly shut - as they may know deep secrets about you!!!! I hope they tell all they know about you as a monster!!
Juanita Jones June 04, 2012 at 01:46 AM
You go girl! Kat1574 is a sorry piece of work, a venomous person - she can't be as educated as she claims to be - no one can be that ignorant. (She makes herself sound simply put "STUPID")
Juanita Jones June 04, 2012 at 01:52 AM
Then join kat1574 as "stupid". Like you said people can have opinions, but that doesn't mean this Meredith doesn't listen and is rude. That is a very bad statement from you. I hope Meredith sticks by her convictions.
Juanita Jones June 04, 2012 at 01:54 AM
Charles, you are so right!!!!
JenKB June 04, 2012 at 02:17 AM
Juanita, you sound like a crazy nut. Get a life. Maybe everyone is tired of listening to the neighbor with the psycho dog, the criminal son, and her tramping around at neighborhood parties hitting on everyone's husbands. We've all tried to be civil, if she (and her criminal son) can dish it, they should be able to take it. Nobody has ever fought a group home with developmentally disabled boys, so we're all a little tired of having this story spun and twisted with all you emotional wrecks out there looking for an argument. You are a gullible dumb fool.
Dana June 04, 2012 at 12:51 PM
Meredith and Tim S. Sue kat1574 and others for defamation of character, take their homes and then donate them to Cornerstone. Your neighbors are evil!!! Their remarks are posted for everyone to see. I would contact an attorney asap.
Elena Maria Scully June 04, 2012 at 05:51 PM
So these are my fellow neighbors? No, not the proposed Cornerstone home, but all of you bickering against it? My family fought for YOUR right to be free and live wherever you chose to, and that also includes our future neighbors with disabilities! STFU ALREADY! What ever happened to DIVERSITY?! Oh thats not allowed here in Minooka? I pay my taxes just like the rest of you and I say LET THEM BUILD, MOVE IN AND BE HAPPY! You all are just afraid of the unknown for now, but as soon as you meet your new neighbors, won't you feel like a complete jacksss!
Dana June 04, 2012 at 07:05 PM
I agree with you Elena, 100%. I am appauld at kat1574 and some other residents saying all those horrible things about their neighbor Meredith and Tim S. From reading all of these posts I can see that Meredith and Tim S are not opposed to Cornerstone building their home. Well, now I believe that I am on kat1574 shit list. Oh well.
Tim June 04, 2012 at 07:12 PM
There is plenty of diversity in Minooka. Just look at the video... there are white men, AND white women at this 'rally'. In all seriousness, it has been great that all these bigoted neighbors have posted here. They honestly think there is nothing wrong with what they are posting, and have gone to great lengths to try to rationalize it away like it is 'normal' to think that way. Like I said earlier, the best thing to come out of this is that the residents of Minooka get to see who ALREADY lives in their neighborhood.
Matthew Lanoue June 05, 2012 at 04:48 PM
Hi, this is Cornerstone's PR guy again. I'll try to explain this again in hopes that it will help everybody rest easy. 1. These kids have developmental disabilities. They have Autism or Down's Syndrome. They do not have schizophrenia or bipolar disorder or anything like that. I don't know why that topic keeps coming up, because we've never said anything like that. 2. The kids aren't living in this home because they have violent or criminal histories. It is generally because their parents have health issues and physically can no longer provide the kind of round-the-clock care they did when the kids were smaller. 3. This is the truth. We cannot help it if people still do not want the home built, or if they think we're hiding something. Out of privacy for our residents, and in keeping with the spirit of giving people with disabilities the chance to live and work in the community, we normally build our houses with no fanfare, just like anybody else. As a result, we were caught off guard by this and hadn't planned a fact sheet. For that, I am sorry. Channahon and Minooka were once tiny towns that have welcomed many thousands of people over the past decade who came here to build a better life for their families. Cornerstone believes these kids with Autism and Down's Syndrome deserve a chance to enjoy the same thing. We strive to enhance communities--not tear them apart. This is not a home to be afraid of, honestly.
Mike Hayes June 05, 2012 at 05:20 PM
They have Autism, Down Syndrome, Aspergers, Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, & a "very broad spectrum of other things which may include mental or behavioral illness" -quoted from your very own CEO. I wonder if you're an expert on developmental disability or if your degree is in another field. DD individuals are more prone to violent behavior (http://phys.org/news167400248.html) - just one of many btw . Add that to the fact that there will be 5 teenage boys & adult men living together in a home w/o daily love, support, guidance, discipline from their parents. Add that to the fact that they're being taken care of by young, inexperienced, uneducated staff who like to post pictures of themselves at their part-time job at the strip club or the staff who was fired for stealing, or the staff who was fired for abuse. These aren't experienced people caring for 5 people with disability. Add that to the fact that they will see all the kids -mostly preteen girls on that street- playing outside & they will know that they aren't included by those kids, and they are at a vulnerable age. Add that to the fact that Cornerstone is a large business looking to make $ off of people with disabilities, not really caring about the residents they say they serve. Yes these teenagers & adults are there by no fault of their own. Yes it is sad, but we aren't interested in letting our own children be the social experiment of a home that isn't even evidence based.
Mike Hayes June 05, 2012 at 05:20 PM
That is why your company doesn't have "fanfare" b/c most people do have a problem with it. It's a bad idea to put a group home right in the middle of a small area with lots of little kids. It's a bad idea to make the neighbors all lose the sense of security they've worked so hard for. All of you who are so in favor of it, I wonder if you have small kids, & if you're still okay with it, then build it by them.
Meredith June 06, 2012 at 08:18 PM
Wow, Jen…what grade are you in now? I must have been very busy at the ONE neighborhood party I’ve ever attended if I was able to hit on ALL of your husbands. I don’t even know that we have ever even met. It’s funny that you seem to think you know so much about me and my kids. As for my son being a “criminal”, I’ll take him with the speeding tickets since that’s the worst he’s ever done and they understand having compassion for those less fortunate than they are. I know it’s easy to hide behind your computer and post lies about people, but you obviously know where I live so if you have something to say, try doing so face-to-face like a grown up. Like I said to Kat, I don’t see how slinging insults and outright lies has anything to do with your opposition to a home for developmentally disabled kids being built in our neighborhood. Why don’t you stick to the issue if you’re so convinced you’re right?
Skb June 08, 2012 at 02:07 PM
Are they building in the low income gubment houses on ridge road or the trailer park?from some of the names being used here it is clear they haven't lived in Minooka long and if the gubment is paying your bills you don't get to have an opinion.
Tim S June 08, 2012 at 06:39 PM
Skb, You do know that there are other factors that go in to receiving money from the government, right? I'd be willing to bet that there are more than a few houses in River's Edge Landing that are receiving funds from the government. They aren't receiving these funds solely because they are a low-income family, there are other factors at play here. Every person is entitled to an opinion.
Tim June 08, 2012 at 07:51 PM
Good. Now every single house with a Government backed mortgage doesn't get to have an opinion. And every person who takes the mortgage interest deduction on their income taxes also doesn't get an opinion. That should leave about 0 people left to complain.
Cheryl Kaplan September 10, 2012 at 09:09 PM
Cheryl Although I do not live in the area where this group home is to be zoned, I can say that I am a social worker and have managed many homes in which the DDD population live. Individual rights and freedoms take presidence here as these people whom will live in this home start to explore and contribute to the neighborhood!! Respect their rights as they do yours! They have just as much right to live in a beautiful enviornment and engage in everything you do!! It's going to happen so embrace it and learn that they have as much to contribute as you do! Being uneducated is ugly!!!

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