Steve Eidelman the past president of The Arc of the United States gave the closing keynote address today.
Here are some facts that he shared with us that should make us all think:
*17.5% of all North Carolinians have a disability.
*20,000 people with developmental disabilities live with aging caregivers.
Steve challenged us to look at the DD system differently by providing these thoughts;
*We live in the age of Google but some still promote insitutions as a service model.
*We need to market the agenda of community inclusion.
*Community Inclusion is Not a Place!!!!
*A waiting list is not a support or a service.
Steve shared with the group an interesting analogy. The fashion industry has labled brown the "new black" well for the DD community sheltered workshops and segregated schools are the "new" institutions.
Now here is a true lightbulb moment; "People with DD are waiting to have a life!"