Getting to Community – New Book from Susan Stanfield and Spectrum Press
An excerpt from Susan Stanfield’s upcoming new book Getting to Community:
supporting people with developmental disabilities in their pursuit of the good life.
For many years, we believed that a good life for someone with a developmental disability involved having lots of services: a residential service, a day program, specialized transportation and recreation services. The human service system expanded rapidly throughout the 1980s and 1990s, fuelled by the assumption that disability-specific services were the key to achieving a good life in community.
In fact, for many people, services had the opposite effect. Instead of being a bridge to community, they replaced it. Services that were intended to be temporary or transitional became permanent. People were on the periphery of community life but somehow separate from it. The service system came to be a kind of closed community unto itself, where tremendous value was placed on paid supports, and relatively little on natural supports. Young people could come into adult services and spend the rest of their lives surrounded by people who were paid to be with them, in environments that were designed especially for them.
Available October 2012 from www.spectrumpress.ca
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