Mokena couple fight to keep fence they say protects autistic son

Full story: The Southtown Star

Sean Flynn, of Mokena, is being told to take down a 25-foot section of fencing in his back yard because he is not allowed to install permanent structures on a land easement that passes through his and neighboring properties.
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Neighbor in the know

Las Vegas, NV

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#1
Aug 17, 2012
 

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It's amazing this couple is using their sons condition as a springboard to fight the association. If there is such a "safety concern" for their child, why build a home on a busy corner, in an area that has three ponds and is so close to train tracks? This story does not list the other items the board has had issues with since construction started. From the seeded grass (subdivision requires sod)to stealing water and electric from Neighbors homes during construction,a bad taste is in the mouth of the whole neighborhood. I love this quote "The corner property has streets on three sides, including busy Townline Road at the rear. Already, two neighbors have almost hit Brock while driving near his home. One burst into tears at the close call, Lisa said" Too bad readers can't witness Mr Flynn spinning his tires as he speeds away from his own home, while his children watch. On more than one occasion, the children are left unattended playing in the front yard, usually too close to the street. Bottom line, watch your own children. They are YOUR responsibility, not the boards, not the villages, YOURS...

Since: Jan 07

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#2
Aug 17, 2012
 

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Having a child with autism, I understand your frustrations over this. The title is misleading. The family doesn't live in a typical neighborhood. If they did, there wouldn't be such an article and I'd have more sympathy being a aparent of a child with autism who was non verbal for a long time. Autism doesn't give you a free pass not to follow rules and when an association is involved with where you live, you generally have to get pre approval for such things. From this article, it doesn't seem like the approval was followed on their end. They closed off the area that was known to them not to do. That's what bugs me, it was done anyway. A fence doesn't always keep our children safe, either. Parents can not simply rely on that alone to keep a runner in. Parents have to be outside with their children who have autism, not only can the child still get out but they could get hurt. I have 3 acres and no fence, and a runner. I never lost my kid when he was little to date.
Bottom line is ADA covers house access. When you live where there is an association, you either have to follow their rules or move. Or, watch your kid. Even typical kids get lost, and drown. Just happened in WI.
Blame Vaccines

Winnipeg, Canada

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#3
Aug 17, 2012
 

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This and much other suffering wouldn't occur if vaccines were safe for all children, but they are not.
Oaks Resident

Des Plaines, IL

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#4
Aug 18, 2012
 

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ITs a shame they are using there son to go against what is law. The Finn's purchased that lot when it was all woods. You think prior to buying the lot and even building that current eye sore they would of looked up the covenants to see what could be done when you live on a conservation easement. That didn't happen and he proceeded with building that low budget house and reusing material from his foreclosure property and clearing his lot free from trees on the weekend so the VIllage couldn't stop him. It's ashame this article didn't run months ago ,when the association asked him to complete his deck you think that would of been a high priority for His SON after all.

We should also ask him and the assessor. Why he is paying taxes of $3,400 .00 on a unimproved lot with a home on it.

Since: Jan 07

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#5
Aug 18, 2012
 

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I don't really care about all the added stuff. The thing is, is when you live where there is an association that allows kids to live there, too, it's not an autism issue. It's a child safety issue and everyone with a child should then be able to build a fence. Aside from that, a child with autism has to learn boundaries and rules a parent does have to teach that to a child, autism and typical. The world isn't surrounded by fences.
Aside from that, the article stated the child has Apraxia, "a condition that often makes it impossible for him to follow directions". I'm guessing they mean speech Apraxia, which the brain has difficulty coordinating the muscle movements necessary to say those words. Has little to do with following directions. This child could follow directions. Also "Sean admits it is difficult to keep constant tabs on the children". This 7 year old boy is the oldest. Hard to believe any parent would admit neglect to the media. They're using the fence for their inability to watch all their children. Social Services should pick up on this, let alone the writer of the article.

It's families like this who have a child with autism that brings autism in a negative manner. All families with children have to follow rules and laws. It's just that simple.
myview

Chicago Heights, IL

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#7
Aug 19, 2012
 

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completely agree with "neighbor in the know". Why build on this lot, it does not meet the needs of your family.

Sean, being in the construction business knows all about covenants and assocaition rules.

This is just the way he chooses to handle things.
He is going to do what he wants, when and how he wants.

Like when he owned the Bar in Frankfort. He knew Neon lights were illegal signage in Frankfort. So he installed a neon light and they fought with the village because he wanted to keep the neon sign.

He's one of those guys you would just like to see be told- NO. Just for the principal of it. We all need to follow rules. But it won't happen in this case they will scream discrimination.
manipulating

Chicago Heights, IL

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#8
Aug 19, 2012
 

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It seems as though the Flynn's probally contacted the newspaper to get their story covered, hoping for a outcry of support.

Guess that strategy backfired.

The article doesn't mention who the fencing contractor was that knowingly installed the illegal portion of the fence.

If he is a licensed fencing contratcator, the village of Mokena should yank his license. Contractors that knowing violate laws should not work in the village.
disgusted

Bensenville, IL

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#10
Aug 20, 2012
 

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If u have time to look up tax info, why dont u look up autism and maybe take a class or two on respecting people. Wow u need to find a job or something to do with ur life if this is how u treat neighbors. U sound like a bunch of uneducated petty desperate housewives enjoying another families difficulties. You have no idea what u r talking about, nor do u know the facts or this family personally, how dare. U judge and talk about others like that. THOSE WHO LIVE IN GLASS HOUSES SHOULD NOT THROW STONES, HAVE SOME CLASS
Neighbor in the know

United States

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#12
Aug 20, 2012
 

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disgusted wrote:
If u have time to look up tax info, why dont u look up autism and maybe take a class or two on respecting people. Wow u need to find a job or something to do with ur life if this is how u treat neighbors. U sound like a bunch of uneducated petty desperate housewives enjoying another families difficulties. You have no idea what u r talking about, nor do u know the facts or this family personally, how dare. U judge and talk about others like that. THOSE WHO LIVE IN GLASS HOUSES SHOULD NOT THROW STONES, HAVE SOME CLASS
We see it everyday, people are not making this stuff up... it's unfortunate that the child suffers from such an illness, but I ask you this... will a man that steals food for his hungry family not be punished if caught? I bet he would... there are avenues by which he could feed his family.. soup kitchens, government support, etc... That said, the excuse being used to violate the covenants is wrong. As quoted on the news when asked about the covenants, the mother stated, I knew about them, but didn't think much of them... really? Noone is throwing stones here, just making sure everbodies piles are the same.. we all pay taxes and association dues... Disregarding the covenants simply displays a lack of respect to the rest of the neighbors and subdivaion board..

Since: Jan 07

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#13
Aug 20, 2012
 

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disgusted wrote:
If u have time to look up tax info, why dont u look up autism and maybe take a class or two on respecting people. Wow u need to find a job or something to do with ur life if this is how u treat neighbors. U sound like a bunch of uneducated petty desperate housewives enjoying another families difficulties. You have no idea what u r talking about, nor do u know the facts or this family personally, how dare. U judge and talk about others like that. THOSE WHO LIVE IN GLASS HOUSES SHOULD NOT THROW STONES, HAVE SOME CLASS
This has really nothing to do with autism at all and a parent like me who has a child with severe autism, this story disgusts me at how autism was used. It isn't an autism story, and all anyone can go off of is the article. That's plenty. No one here is disrespecting others here, but you. ALL children could use a fence. ALL children have the potential of wandering. ALL children have to follow rules and learn boundaries. And the biggest clue what the real story is: ""Sean admits it is difficult to keep constant tabs on the children". This 7 year old boy is the oldest, and the only one known to have autism. We're then to assume the other younger children do know rules and boundaries, even though he admits he doesn't keep tabs on all the children he has? The real story is, autism was the excuse (some buy into that, I do not) and the fence is the baby sitter for the parent who cant keep tabs on all of their kids.

The 'lack of respect' is those parents who use autism to break laws and rules, when it's not even the child with autism breaking them. It's the parents.
GLAD I LIVE IN ORLAND

Tinley Park, IL

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#14
Aug 20, 2012
 

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Being in the field of autism for almost twenty years and having a child with autism, it is people like you that make the world a terrible place for children with special needs. What happened to empathy? You have no idea how difficult it is to have a child with special needs, the emotional and physical toll it takes on the entire family. How did this turn into a slander fest of these people? I don't give a damn about anything but supporting a family that wants to do what is best for the safety of their child. Children with autism have fight or flight responses, and are not aware often times of danger or their own bodies in space. I also have an easement in my yard, and wanted a fence but would never use it as a babysitter. Where did that come from and how can you say these parents are using their child's disability to break the rules? Are you kidding me, what would they gain from a fence, if not to protect their children? I have never in my career or as a parent been more disappointed in the responses I have heard today. Where is your sense of compassion, how far would you go to protect your child? The other information is just a cowardess attack on this family, I agree with disgusted! Glad I am not your neighbors!
Neighbor in the know

United States

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#15
Aug 20, 2012
 

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GLAD I LIVE IN ORLAND wrote:
Being in the field of autism for almost twenty years and having a child with autism, it is people like you that make the world a terrible place for children with special needs. What happened to empathy? You have no idea how difficult it is to have a child with special needs, the emotional and physical toll it takes on the entire family. How did this turn into a slander fest of these people? I don't give a damn about anything but supporting a family that wants to do what is best for the safety of their child. Children with autism have fight or flight responses, and are not aware often times of danger or their own bodies in space. I also have an easement in my yard, and wanted a fence but would never use it as a babysitter. Where did that come from and how can you say these parents are using their child's disability to break the rules? Are you kidding me, what would they gain from a fence, if not to protect their children? I have never in my career or as a parent been more disappointed in the responses I have heard today. Where is your sense of compassion, how far would you go to protect your child? The other information is just a cowardess attack on this family, I agree with disgusted! Glad I am not your neighbors!
The "other information" lends to the lack of credibility by the parents.

Since: Jan 07

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#16
Aug 20, 2012
 

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The problem with the autism community is you're expected to jump on every one's band wagon just because you're a part of that community, and anyone else just couldn't possibly understand how having a kid with autism is. When you don't jump on that band wagon, you get 'GLAD I LIVE IN ORLAND' and 'disgusted'.

This is not about empathy. Some of us can look at situations with out being all emotional over it, in order to see beyond that 'autism' being used, and autism was used in a negative manner here, as an excuse why the parents did break the rules of where they live. Read between the lines. They have 4 boys, 7 is the oldest and most likely in school, which means the youngest could be no older than 3 but could be as young as 1 or 2. This isn't just about that one child with autism and anyone who thinks it is, has too many emotions running to see it. The fence is more for ALL those kids, not just that one with autism. But they're using autism as the reason. It's sickening. What would they gain from the fence? The youngest child not having tabs kept on him and wandering off while the 7 year old is in school. Any parent that admits they cant keep tabs on their 4 children obviously needs a fence due to their inability as a parent, but done via the rules where they live. You think any of this would be going on had they followed those rules?? No one would had cared.

Since: Jan 07

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#17
Aug 20, 2012
 

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GLAD I LIVE IN ORLAND wrote:
I don't give a damn about anything but supporting a family that wants to do what is best for the safety of their child.
Everyone should be aware how associations work, even if one has never lived where one is. People choose to live where associations are as opposed to single family neighborhood houses just due to having the association. So you're saying you would advice parents who have children with autism to forget about association rules and permissions and everyone else who lives there (talk about lack empathy for others), and just go and do whatever they feel to keep a child safe?
NO Fan ofComplaining Oaks

Orland Park, IL

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#18
Aug 20, 2012
 

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Not a Fan of Complaining Oaks

I find it sad when a community is so proud of the houses and bi-laws, they would rather throw out the window common sense, and spend their time worrying about things, instead of safety of children –autistic or not.

Are you telling me that Complaining Oaks would rather attack neighbors and call them bad parents because they fought to close off their yard with a small section of a fence that goes over an easement? Really how sad. I can only hope that one day you will wake up to how petty you sound.

What kind of association allows you to have a fence that has an opening anyway.

Maybe this family should walk around the neighborhood and identify others who infringe on an easement. I would bet there has to be examples of this.

I live in Orland and live in a great neighborhood with supportive neighbors. With neighbors like the Complaining Oaks, who needs enemies?

Maybe it is time for Complaining Oaks to put their money and time to better use than to turn on each other. How about focus on how to help each other or other deserving people outside your special Hysteria Lane.
Neighbor too

United States

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#19
Aug 21, 2012
 

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NO Fan ofComplaining Oaks wrote:
Not a Fan of Complaining Oaks
I find it sad when a community is so proud of the houses and bi-laws, they would rather throw out the window common sense, and spend their time worrying about things, instead of safety of children –autistic or not.
Are you telling me that Complaining Oaks would rather attack neighbors and call them bad parents because they fought to close off their yard with a small section of a fence that goes over an easement? Really how sad. I can only hope that one day you will wake up to how petty you sound.
What kind of association allows you to have a fence that has an opening anyway.
Maybe this family should walk around the neighborhood and identify others who infringe on an easement. I would bet there has to be examples of this.
I live in Orland and live in a great neighborhood with supportive neighbors. With neighbors like the Complaining Oaks, who needs enemies?
Maybe it is time for Complaining Oaks to put their money and time to better use than to turn on each other. How about focus on how to help each other or other deserving people outside your special Hysteria Lane.
Perhaps you, and your opinion, should simply stay in Orland...

Since: Jan 07

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#20
Aug 21, 2012
 

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Why not just toss the association out the door? people can all just do what they want. I'm sure the bennefit of living where there's an association covers a lot more than just putting up fences. If I started having children and lived on a busy street, I'd move. The speed limit even isn't 45 or 55. It's 25 and residential. A fence gives a false sense of safety and I hate to inform people, a kid can climb over that fence. This really isn't about neighborly looooove and what they can do for each other. It's about following the permission they had for putting up the fence, and they violated that permission. Any excuse they give for that violation is just that, an excuse. I will have to say after looking at the photo gallery, the fence going through rock land scaping that covers both properties does look totally tacky.
Sean Flynn

Maywood, IL

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#21
Aug 21, 2012
 

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friend wrote:
Having a child with autism, I understand your frustrations over this. The title is misleading. The family doesn't live in a typical neighborhood. If they did, there wouldn't be such an article and I'd have more sympathy being a aparent of a child with autism who was non verbal for a long time. Autism doesn't give you a free pass not to follow rules and when an association is involved with where you live, you generally have to get pre approval for such things. From this article, it doesn't seem like the approval was followed on their end. They closed off the area that was known to them not to do. That's what bugs me, it was done anyway. A fence doesn't always keep our children safe, either. Parents can not simply rely on that alone to keep a runner in. Parents have to be outside with their children who have autism, not only can the child still get out but they could get hurt. I have 3 acres and no fence, and a runner. I never lost my kid when he was little to date.
Bottom line is ADA covers house access. When you live where there is an association, you either have to follow their rules or move. Or, watch your kid. Even typical kids get lost, and drown. Just happened in WI.
Hey Neighbor who actually knows nothing, for your information I paid 20 dollars a month to use the 1 dollar in elect
Sean Flynn

Maywood, IL

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#23
Aug 21, 2012
 

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Neigbor wrote:
Just looked up the Flynn's address on the Will County Web. They really are paying al little over $3,400 dollars. I will be contacting the acessor next week. How does this happen? How has he been able to dodge what he truly owes the County? I'm sure the rst of my neigbors will love to hear this.
HEY idiot it happens because it takes a year to catch up, kinda like you were in school. when you call ask why the sun has been so bright it has been hurting my eyes maybe they can turn it down a little. again no name like hiding in bushes.

Since: Jan 07

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#24
Aug 21, 2012
 

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Wow, if you are the real person, you have a lot to learn about forums and use of names. Most people practice online safety. You should try it.

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