Implementing a 21st Century Disability Policy
A 21st Century disability policy incorporates the following:
1. Supports for ourselves involve ourselves. Individuals and families are involved in the planning, development, and implementation of supports.
2. Supports are as flexible as possible; an inflexible support is rarely a support at all.
3. Supports are individual/family-friendly in that they are understandable, easy to access, culturally-sensitive, multilingual if necessary, etc. This user-friendliness is reflected in all communication – be it presentation, meetings, or daily interactions.
4. The system is transparent; those receiving services have easy access to information about amounts allocated and actual costs.
5. Funding is personalized, not cookie-cutter. Allocations are flexible, and we have the ability to shop around for supports and/or providers.
6. There is substantial consultation with us and our families over changes in regulations and policies. This is a reflection of the fact that the system is there to serve us, not the other way around.
7. Supports and education are maximized; rules and regulations minimized.
8. The system promotes and supports innovation and creativity.
9. The system is free of “us-ism” and “they-ism”, both by working collaboratively with us and our families and by valuing our roles in society.
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