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By Eva Loayza | November 19th, 2012 - 4:12pm
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Assembly Democrats News Release

Gusciora & Vainieri Huttle Bill to Strengthen Delivery of Law Enforcement Services to Individuals with Mental & Developmental Disabilities Approved by Assembly Panel

(TRENTON) - An Assembly committee on Monday approved legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Reed Gusciora (D-Mercer) and Valerie Vainieri Huttle (D-Bergen) to create a voluntary registry for individuals with mental or developmental disabilities in New Jersey that would be helpful to law enforcement officers and other First Responders

Gusciora drafted the bill after he was approached by a Ewing police officer who read about a mentally disabled man who was allegedly beaten by state troopers in Warren County, and thought there needed to be a better way for law enforcement officers to deal with persons with disabilities. Gusciora also met with several groups that serve individuals with disabilities including ARC Mercer and Autism New Jersey, Inc to discuss ways law enforcement agencies can better serve people with disabilities.

"First Responders often encounter persons with mental or developmentally disabilities in emergency situations," said Gusciora. "The problem arises when the police or first aid responders mistake any intemperate behavior from individuals at the scene for criminal behavior. There are other instances when an adult with autism or even Alzheimer's disease becomes lost and is found by law enforcement and they do not know how to calm them or contact their family members who could help."

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Wake-Up Call

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Quote of the Day

quote of the day

"After not responding to messages all week seeking an interview about the campaign, Garrett’s spokeswoman said on Friday afternoon that she would try to set one up, but did not respond further. Garrett has not released any announcements of where he would be campaigning, though he has posted pictures on social media on Sept. 8 from the Greenwood Lake Air Show in West Milford and on Sept. 14 from the Hackettstown Street Fair. Garrett has not agreed to any debates so far." - columnist Herb Jackson

- The Bergen Record

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