A team of individuals from Texas who participated in a regional summit in Chicago this spring identified two initiatives to strengthen self-advocacy efforts in our state, and made several recommendations on the national level.
The team represents 14 organizations and focused on two statewide goals:
- To strengthen and support Texas self-advocacy organizations.
- To close at least one State Supported Living Center.
The team also made several recommendations to the federal agency that sponsored the summit, the Administration on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (AIDD, which recently changed its name from the Administration for Developmental Disabilities).
Some of the recommendations include:
- AIDD re-prioritizing money or support to self-advocacy groups in the states, and/or AIDD having internal staff dedicated to self advocacy.
- The AIDD commissioner communicating with governors on the importance of increasing the number of self-advocates on boards, councils, advisory boards, and commissions, etc.
- AIDD forming stronger relationships with specific disability-related agencies and promoting the hiring of self-advocates at the state level to conduct training.
- Researching why states do poorly in providing developmental disabilities services and studying how self-advocacy can be strengthened in those states.
Visit the Allies in Self-Advocacy website for details on the Texas self-advocacy team, its initiatives and recommendations, and efforts in other states.
The Texas team plans to meet again before the end of June to continue its work. It includes representatives from many of the state’s self-advocacy organizations, the state’s Developmental Disability Network partners and other key state leaders.