Man with Asperger’s from Bellmore critical after car accident –

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I saw this on News12 this morning.  It is tragic that someone’s life is in danger because of service cuts.  When you see stories about service cuts to public services, you often think, ‘Oh this doesn’t affect me’ and you’re probably right.  It does, however, affect many others; those who NEED the services, and those trying to provide services to others.  Forget that he has Asperger’s Syndrome for a minute; this might be your son or daughter doing volunteer work, or doing their internship at college or for a better job opportunity. 
Now remember he has Asperger’s and think about how his routine has been altered significantly again.  It was altered initially when he had to walk nearly a mile after riding a bus to his volunteer job.  Now it has been altered again, now added with the daunting task of surviving and then recovering from his injuries. 
For those not familiar with Mercy Medical Center, where this young man was headed, it is located quickly off the exit ramp of the Southern State Parkway, with many tributary streets filled with cars and trucks speeding to their destinations. 
 So when service cuts are proposed by lawmakers and politicians, ask them how those cuts will keep their constituents safe and productive?  Ask them to look into the eyes of those who NEED the services and tell them what alternatives you have for them.  Ask them to literally walk a mile in the shoes of Joey Procopio for a day.
Man with Asperger’s from Bellmore critical after car accident

(03/11/12) BELLMORE– A Nassau County man with Asperger’s, who has always had a genuine desire to help others, is fighting for his life after being hit by a car.

Family members say Joey Procopio, 21, volunteered two days a week at Mercy Medical Center. He used to take the bus straight to the hospital, but after the MTA cut the bus service last year, his commute became more complicated.

“He found a way,” says his aunt, Karen Bray. “He had a travel coach that would help him and he knew how to read a bus schedule a train station – and he would walk almost a mile.”

But on Thursday, Procopio was hit by a car after getting off the bus. He is in critical condition in Winthrop Hospital’s intensive care unit.


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