PARTNERS IN Policy-Making
Forging A Path For Systems Change
What is Partners in Policymaking?
Partners in Policymaking is a leadership and advocacy training program that teaches individuals with developmental disabilities and parents to become community leaders and catalysts for systems change. While walking along this path, participants learn how to obtain the best available services for themselves and others.
Based on a national model, the overall goal of Partners is to develop productive partnerships between people who need and use services and those in a position to create policies and laws. Partners participants become influencers of change by experiencing opportunities to meet and speak with national leaders in the field of developmental disabilities. During class sessions the participants hear presentations about current issues and state-of-the art practices, as well as policymaking and legislative processes at local, state, and national levels.
Who Should Apply?
Adults who have a developmental disability
Family members of persons with developmental disabilities
Men and women representing different ages, experiences, ethnic groups, and geographical regions of Florida
Highly motivated and enthusiastic people who want to work for systems change and improve the lives of Floridians with developmental disabilities
What Is My Role As a Partner?
Make a commitment to attend six two-day monthly sessions tentatively beginning in September. Training sessions typically begin on Friday afternoons at 12:30 p.m. and conclude on Saturday afternoons at 4:00 p.m.
Attendance at all six monthly sessions is mandatory
Complete all homework assignments (approximately 2 to 4 hours) between training sessions usually consisting of reading, evaluating resources on the internet, and practical exercises.
Implement skills learned during your training and continue advocacy work on behalf of people with developmental disabilities.
Completion of a major project benefiting people with developmental disabilities in your community
Only individuals selected to participate in the Partners program may attend and stay at the hotel during training sessions.
What Does Partners Cost?
There is NO financial cost to participate in Partners
Shared lodging for those living more than 1/2 hour travel time from the training site and meals will be provided.
Approved travel expenses are reimbursed
Attendant care and respite services are available and will be reimbursed at a pre-arranged rate, if needed
Other necessary accommodations will be provided at no cost such as interpreter, translator, and alternative materials
Partners WILL cost you time and effort, but Partners graduates agree that the commitment you make as a participant is well worth the life changes, knowledge you will gain, and relationships you will build while participating in the program.
What You Will Get In Return?
Information, skills, and confidence to bring about change for those with developmental disabilities across a life-span.
The opportunity to meet and unite with others who have similar concerns and create a powerful voice on important issues.
Hands-on experiences in the state law-making process.
Instruction and access to national experts in their field.
· History of the Disability Movement
· Inclusive Education and Transition
· Assistive Technology
· Supported/Competitive Employment
· Supported/Independent Living
· Person Centered Planning
· Community Support
· State and Federal Legislative Process
· Leadership Development
· Organizing for Systems Change
Top 10 Values of Partners in Policymaking
Value #1: People with disabilities are people first . They are not “the handicapped” or “the disabled.” Using People First Language is a must – no labels
Value #2: People with disabilities need real friendships, not just relationships with paid staff.
Value #3: People with disabilities are entitled to the full meaning of The First Amendment right to free speech. The ability to communicate, in whatever form, must be available to every person with a disability.
Value #4: People with disabilities must be able to enjoy full mobility and accessibility that allows active participation in community life.
Value #5: People with disabilities must be assured continuity in their lives through families and neighborhood connections.
Value #6: People with disabilities must be treated with respect and dignity.
Value #7: People with disabilities need to be in positions to negotiate to have their wants and needs met.
Value #8: People with disabilities must be able to exercise choice in all areas of their lives.
Value #9: People with disabilities must be able to live in the homes of their choices with the supports they need.
Value #10: People with disabilities must be able to enjoy the benefits of true productivity through employment and/or contributions as members of their communities.
Conference Call Minutes
The Advisory Committee holds approximately five conference calls each year. Minutes of these calls are available upon request by contacting Stacey Hoaglund at firstname.lastname@example.org
Application for Partners in Policymaking
For additional information, please contact:
Stacey Hoaglund, Project Coordinator
5505 SW 119 Avenue, Cooper City, FL 33330
(954) 252-8764 (fax) (866) 747-8693