Diabetes group asks, Hey Mississippi lawmaker, can you spare $10?

A group of parents and children dealing with the high cost of diabetes is asking Mississippi lawmakers to give $10 from their special session pay to the cause.
A group of parents and children dealing with the high cost of diabetes is asking Mississippi lawmakers to give $10 from their special session pay to the cause. AP

Silver linings continue to pop up in the storm created by Ocean Springs Rep. Jeffrey Guice. Guice, responding to the mother of a child with Type 1 diabetes, messaged her wondering why she didn’t spend the money she earned on her daughter’s medical supplies.

The story has gone more than viral, it’s been a pandemic of bad coverage for the Coast Republican. It’s also put a spotlight on the high cost of caring for kids with diabetes.

Nicole Nichols, the mother, has the attention of Medicaid, which was her original intent. And it has a group of people dealing with diabetes all around Mississippi that came together to keep the heat on lawmakers. A letter from the group sent by Mark Jones of Clinton, who also is communications director for the city, asks lawmakers to donate $10 from their pay for this week’s extraordinary legislative session to the Diabetes Foundation of Mississippi’s Helping Hands Fund.

Here’s the letter. Please read to the bottom, where you find the names of dozens of people affected by diabetes. Hope the lawmakers give a sawbuck or more.

The letter

State Representative Jeffrey Guice (R), Ocean Springs, made headlines for his response to the parent of a child with Type 1 diabetes seeking assistance cutting through the bureaucratic red tape of Medicaid for access to diabetic supplies currently covered by insurance (CHIPS and Medicaid).

The diabetes community was shocked and dismayed at the callous disregard for the plight of many individuals with Type 1 Diabetes by Representative Guice.

As noted thoroughly in recent days, many persons with diabetes and parents of children with diabetes work multiple jobs and forego bill payments in order to pay for the supplies required to keep themselves or their child alive. For persons with Type 1 diabetes, these supplies are not luxuries that make life more comfortable, these supplies are critical to the daily treatment of diabetes to sustain the life of a person with diabetes.

With monthly supplies for diabetes management costing an average of $2,500 (and potentially more), many parents are forced to make serious decisions regarding living arrangements, jobs and food every month. In those times of uncertainty, The Diabetes Foundation of Mississippi has become a constant source of peace and support for individuals with diabetes and their families.

Through The Diabetes Foundation of Mississippi, individuals and families with diabetes have access to essential education, instruction and community support. In addition to the advocacy and educational programs of The Diabetes Foundation of Mississippi, the DFM provides a timely and lifesaving resource for Mississippians with all forms of diabetes.

The Helping Hands program, managed by The Diabetes Foundation of Mississippi provides free emergency assistance with insulin, other diabetes-related medications, and testing supplies to Mississippians in need.

Given the cost of some diabetes medications and supplies, and the number of requests they receive, The Diabetes Foundation of MS may not be able to supply everything requested.

Fully understanding the expense of providing this service, we the undersigned individuals and parent/caregivers of children with diabetes are challenging each legislator in Mississippi to donate at least $10 of their special session pay to support The Diabetes Foundation of Mississippi’s Helping Hands Fund. By making donations to this fund, our legislators will be recognizing the daily fight those affected by diabetes wage against this incurable yet treatable auto immune disorder.

Additionally, we are asking every parent of a child in Mississippi to consider making a $10 donation to support the work of The Diabetes Foundation of Mississippi.

Donations may be made online at or by calling (601) 957-7878.

Respectfully submitted:

Mark and Samantha Manning: Kennedy Manning,12, Brandon

Leslie and Brian Martin: Hunter, 4, Baldwyn

Ashley Payne: Travis Payne, 7, Tylertown

Mark and Kelly Jones: Megan Jones, 12, Clinton

Rachel and Blake Campbell: Jayce Campbell, 5, Drew

Wayne and Lauren Shinault: Kristen, 4, Sardis

Kristina and Elioutte Dickinson: Chloe, 8, Vicksburg

William and Valerie Case: Rheagan Case, 15, Florence

Kristen Fowler Sarah, 10, Jackson

Daniel & Angela McAllister: Jameson McAllister, 13, Vicksburg

Scott and Yaya Dearman: Hannah Dearman,16 months, Laurel

Michael and Tisha Self: Rylee Self, 14, Crowder

Richard and Erin Southard: Richie Southard age 3, Vicksburg

Jo Maddox: Shelby Maddox, 11, Magee

Devin Bishop, age 19. Vicksburg

Chelsea Braddock: Cayden Kingsley, 10, Mooreville

Cady Howard: Mason Howard, 7. Greene County

Greg and Angela Vaughan: Andrew Vaughan, 14, Vicksburg

Scott & Ashley Boone: Kinsley Boone, 4, Pearl River County

For Tammy and Joe Miles: Brittany Miles, 17 Starkville

Elizabeth Cisowski, 13, Blue Springs

Linda & Donald Kevin Bishop: Devin Bishop, 19, Vicksburg

Petru and Hollie Marjanovic: Mila, 3, Raymond

Katelyn Armstrong, 29, and Jimmy Armstrong, 62, Jackson

Leslie Junkin: Isabella Junkin 16, Columbus

Kim & Ken Kuhn: Emerson Sandidge, 11, Brandon

Molly Murray, 11, Clinton

Alexia and Spencer Long: Anna-Whitten Long, 4, New Albany

Chris and Denise Warnock: Caleb, 5 Florence

Bubba and Allyson Mize, Trustin age 7, Oxford

Chris and Lila Kelley, Maggie Kelley age 6, Waynesboro

Tracie and Kevin Riggin, Sophie Riggin, age 3, Brandon

Beth & Richard Biedenharn: Gracie, 12, Madison

Randy and Nacole Reid: Lakyn , 6, Purvis

Nathan and Nicole Nichols: Bella, 8, Richland

Shane and Beth McCray: Dylan McCray, 6. Starkville

Royd & Clancy Walker: Grayson, 8 Lena, Ms

Eddie and Elise Deano: Bryce, 11, Long Beach

Shauna & Joe McCall: Justin, 8, Runnelstown

Liz Severin and brother Sonny Severin: Ashley Severin, 11, Ridgeland

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