How Project Guardianship is meeting the rapidly growing need for support
The current guardianship system in New York is at a breaking point with a rapidly growing need, a lack of capacity, strains on our healthcare system, and the growing costs of government support.
Drawing on our direct service experience, Project Guardianship seeks to influence policy and practice that impact people in the guardianship system, both statewide and nationally. We educate decision-makers at the local, state, and federal levels about the current gaps in care, the growing population in need of guardianship, and practical approaches for addressing them.
We are shining a light on the gaps in the guardianship and elder services safety net. Through research and policy change, we seek to promote models that address critical needs for individuals, save public dollars, and allow key governmental institutions to operate more effectively.
Specifically, our policy efforts include:
- Advocating for policy changes that will create and fund a diverse spectrum of guardianship providers to meet the varied and individual needs of all New Yorkers in need of a guardian.
- Conducting research to identify geographic areas and population groups in New York State that are underserved by guardianship services.
- Conducting research on the cost savings that comprehensive guardianship services can provide to government programs, especially Medicaid.
- Advocating for integrated services across the legal, healthcare, housing, banking, and mental health sectors, and increasingly addressing the intersections of mental health and guardianship due to issues such as medication noncompliance, hospitalizations, hoarding, evictions, homelessness, and criminal justice system involvement.
We engage leaders from healthcare and other government-affiliated service delivery systems to find sustainable ways to improve the guardianship system, and advocate for a too-often invisible population lacking a voice in how society will provide for them.
Project Guardianship was founded to create a solution to the injustices in the guardianship system. We designed and demonstrated a working model of providing guardianship that maximizes autonomy and engages the client in decision-making. Now, we are working to expand upon our model and advocate for a reformed guardianship system to ensure high-quality guardianship available to all, and other supportive networks for individuals with disabilities and mental health disorders.