Frontline Initiative DSP Recognition

NYSACRA Awarded Grant:
Recognition and Advancement for New York DSPs


Joseph M. Macbeth is the Assistant Executive Director of New York State Association of Community and Residential Agencies (NYSACRA).

The New York State Association of Community and Residential Agencies (NYSACRA) was recently awarded $300,000 by the New York State Office of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities to enhance the recognition and advancement of New York’s direct support workforce.

The funding award recognizes NYSACRA’s commitment and comprehensive approach to assist their member agencies in recruiting and retaining a quality workforce. While the association is very proud of their recent success, there is much, much more to do to improve the skills and competence of our workforce and subsequently improve the quality of services to New Yorkers with intellectual and other developmental disabilities. This grant will allow NYSACRA and its 200 member agencies to take their initiatives even further.

“By showing us how to best support the people who truly touch the lives of those with developmental disabilities, these demonstration projects will benefit our entire system of care,” said Commissioner Diana Jones Ritter. “We´re about putting people first, and that means our workers as well those we support. We must nurture and reward the best practices of our valuable staff, so they can continue providing excellent care, and know that they are vitally important to our agency.” This grant allows NYSACRA to:

  1. Establish a marketing campaign to recruit and encourage Direct Support Professionals (DSPs) in the development of a New York Chapter of the NADSP.
  2. Develop and share two Realistic Job Previews: one from the point of view of a person with intellectual disabilities who manages his or her own supports, and another from the point of view of a provider agency.
  3. Develop a comprehensive advertising campaign about the role of the DSP and the crisis in this workforce. Public service announcements and printed materials will illustrate the realities of the crisis in recruiting and retaining quality employees. These messages will also promote DSP job opportunities.
  4. Become the statewide administrator for the oversight, marketing, and dissemination of the College of Direct Support.