Feature Issue on Person-Centered Positive Supports and People with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

From the Editors

“She treats me like a human being.” Caroline Chavez says these seven words changed her life. Reflecting on her years as a direct care provider she tells this story in this issue of Impact:

“One of the guys never addressed staff by name, ever…One day, out of the blue, he addressed me by name. My stunned co-workers asked him why. “She treats me like a human being.’”

Person-centered positive supports are about empowering people with disabilities to live lives that fully reflect their individuality and their humanity. They’re about using evidence-based positive practices in the service of the needs, values, and goals of the person receiving the support. And they’re about promoting quality of life for people in ways that are meaningful to them.

This Impact issue examines the use of person-centered positive supports with people who have intellectual and developmental disabilities. It educates about the issues, guiding principles, and choices that must be examined in policy and practice. It profiles exemplary strategies for delivery of services. And it shares personal stories of the difference that person-centered positive supports make for individuals.

It’s our hope that this Impact will help ensure that all people with disabilities have access to quality services and supports that empower them to live the lives of their choosing.