‘Long way to go’: Leader of Wisconsin program wants to help more farmers with disabilities
Wisconsin Public Radio
The head of a program called AgrAbility that has helped thousands of Wisconsin farmers with disabilities said he is looking to grow staff so they can more fully meet demand for services.
Jeff Kratochwill, the farm program director of Easterseals Wisconsin, said his seven-person team provides resources to farmers such as assistive technology. Prosthetic legs can help farmers get on top of a tractor. Others with arthritis need help to bend down and milk cows.
“Certainly, we realize Wisconsin is a big state and a lot of territory to cover,” he said recently on WPR’s “The Morning Show.” “There (are) certainly a lot of farmers out there that could benefit from our service that currently aren’t either reaching out to us or don’t know about us.”
On its website, AgrAbility says more than 4,000 injuries happen on state farms each year and nationally “agricultural production is one of the most hazardous occupations with the highest disabling injury rate of any industry.” More than 38,000 Wisconsin farmers have a limitation or disability.
AgrAbility, which has been around for more than 30 years, [...]