What is the Council on Developmental Disabilities?
THE NEW JERSEY COUNCIL ON DEVELOPMENTAL DISABILITIES, funded by the federal government with matching funds from the state, is a lead change agent in the State responsible for a vision of what the lives of people with developmental disabilities should be. Through its membership and its activities and projects, the Council provides a forum and resources for making its vision a reality.
The State Plan is the official document that contains details on Council membership, general information about research findings, a listing of Council priority areas and activities for the Plan Cycle, required assurances and basic financial information on Council allocations. In it, the Council states its VISION for people with developmental disabilities living in New Jersey.
The Council is authorized by the federal Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Act, and in New Jersey State government by NJSA 30:1AA 1.2 and is codified in Title 10 of the State Administrative Codes. State law places the Council “in but not of” the New Jersey Department of Human Services.
Many public and private agencies are involved in the lives of people with developmental disabilities. The Council provides a platform for these agencies, together with consumers, parents and advocates, to develop a coordinated social policy. To this end, the Council commissions research on policy issues and funds model programs. The Council also funds projects to inform decision-makers, legislators and the general public about developmental disabilities.
PURPOSE AND VISION
The purpose of the Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Act of 2000 (P.L. 106-402) is to assure that individuals with developmental disabilities and their families participate in the design and have access to needed community services, individualized supports, and other forms of assistance that promote self determination, independence, productivity, integration and inclusion in all facets of life through culturally competent programs.
The purpose of the Developmental Disabilities Councils, according to federal law, is to engage in advocacy, capacity building and systemic change that contribute to a coordinated, consumer and family-centered, consumer- and family-directed comprehensive system that includes needed community services, individualized supports, and other forms of assistance that promote self determination for individuals with developmental disabilities and their families
The Vision of the New Jersey Council on Developmental Disabilities is that all individuals with developmental disabilities are contributing members of their neighborhoods and communities; make real choices and have control over their own lives; have the freedom to strive, excel, and make mistakes; are in a position to achieve personal goals, are in a position to affect policy and process decisions that affect their lives; and have the same rights, privileges, responsibilities, and opportunities of citizenship as does any other New Jersey resident.