When looking for a city in which to live, the majority of people think of such factors as affordability, many opportunities for employment, a reputable school system, and an assortment of leisure-time activities. However, people with special needs also frequently consider the following factors when searching for a place to live:
- Accessibility of public facilities
- Quality of health care
- Cleanliness of the air
When such needs are met, people with special needs have the ability to make contributions to their communities, to the economy, and to the diversity of the workforce. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reveals that in 2015, over five million individuals with disabilities were employed.
However, the Bureau also disclosed that the unemployment rate has been increasing for those with special needs. This is especially disconcerting because many such people depend on the income from their jobs to offer them some financial security when their disability benefits are not enough to support them.
The top five cities that are favorable to those with special needs are as follows:
- Overland Park, KS
- Scottsdale, AZ
- Lincoln, NE
- Gilbert, AZ
- Peoria, AZ
In recognizing the cities with the most appropriate living conditions for those with special needs, analysts made comparisons of the 150 most populated cities across the three important elements of economy, quality of life and health care. The analysts assessed these categories by using 25 related metrics, including the following with regard to economy:
- Affordability of housing
- Cost of living
- Rate of employment for those with special needs
- Percentage of people with disability who are residing below the poverty level
- Yearly cost of in-home services
- Median wages for people with disabilities
Among the metrics regarding quality of life are:
- Percentage of individuals with special needs residing in the area
- Number of special-education teachers
- Number of restaurants that are accessible to wheelchairs
The metrics relevant to health care include:
- The cost of a visit to the doctor
- Average health insurance premium for each person
- Number of family doctors and general practitioners
If you are the parent of a special needs child and need help with an IEP or 504 Plan or anything else, contact the Special Education attorneys at the Law Offices of McDowell Posternock Apell & Detrick PC.
The article above: (1) does not create or constitute an attorney-client relationship, (2) is not intended as a solicitation, (3) is not intended to convey or constitute legal advice, and (4) is not a substitute for personalized legal advice from a qualified attorney. You should not act upon any such information without first seeking qualified professional counsel about your specific matter.