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AccessCNY receives new funding for counseling, residential services

AccessCNY Executive Director Paul Joslyn (left) accepts a check from State Senator John Mannion, Jan. 25
Abigail Connolly
AccessCNY Executive Director Paul Joslyn (left) accepts a check from State Senator John Mannion, Jan. 25

One central New York nonprofit and disabilities services provider is receiving funding for life-saving services.

State Sen. John Mannion secured $200,000 in funding for AccessCNY. The funding will help cover the costs of children’s social work counseling and installing backup generators at Individual Residential Alternatives to help those relying on electrical medical equipment.

AccessCNY Executive Director Paul Joslyn said new funding will be imperative to providing life-saving technologies and services. He said it lays the groundwork for the new Children’s Respite and Mental Wellness Center set to open in a temporary location in mid-2024.

“It helps build the resources, the human resources, we need to support the need today, the children and adults with a dual diagnosis, but will also give us the capability to expand into that respite center once it’s up and running,” Joslyn said.

Joslyn said the funding comes at a critical time for mental health services.

“People with developmental disabilities are five times more likely to have a mental health issue as well," Joslyn said. "And so bringing that service back into our clinic now, as we are still sort of coming out of the pandemic still a little bit, we are still dealing with a lot of the mental health issues that were created as a result of the pandemic, the timing couldn't be more important for that,” Joslyn said.

As chairman of the Senate Disability Committee, Mannion said it is important to continue to advocate for funding for disability services.

“I feel great responsibility in being that voice,” Mannion said. “The New York State budget is a large one, it’s multifaceted and there are different priorities. If I am not speaking in my conference to my leadership about the priorities for the disabilities community and the state-operated and voluntary providers that deliver services for individuals with disabilities, I’m not sure others will.”

AccessCNY serves around 2,400 people in the greater Onondaga County area annually.

Abigail is a temporary WRVO News Reporter/Producer working on regional and digital news stories. She graduated from SUNY Oswego in 2022 where she studied English and Public Relations. Abigail enjoys reading, writing, exploring CNY and spending time with family and friends. Abigail first joined the WRVO team as a student reporter in June 2022.