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ERIC Number: ED360801
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1993
Pages: 20
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Supported Living: What's the Difference?
O'Brien, John
This paper points out that the promise of supported living for individuals with developmental disabilities lies in its potential to deal creatively and individually with the complexities arising from the lives of many different individuals. The paper describes personal experiences of leaders in supported living agencies that enabled them to step outside the assumptions and practices that usually govern service providers. These experiences include being surprised to discover that people with disabilities are able to do things that experts have said they could not do, and recognizing similarities between oneself and people with disabilities which are much deeper than apparent differences. Supported living is defined by stating what it is not. Common assumptions made by the existing service system are identified and are accompanied by better assumptions. Common problems of people involved in supported living are discussed, such as poverty, loneliness and isolation, and complex relationships with staff. The paper concludes that community opportunities need to be created; collaborative relationships with family members need to be developed; and new ways to plan for people, deal with dangerous situations, find flexibility in funding, and supervise need to be created. The obligations of the supported living service provider to the person and to the person's friends and family are listed. (JDD)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: Syracuse Univ., NY. Center on Human Policy.; National Inst. on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (ED/OSERS), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Minnesota Univ., Minneapolis. Research and Training Center on Community Living.; Responsive Systems Associates, Lithonia, GA.