TASH is committed to expanding person-centered, long-term supports and individualized choice for community living for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. – TASH National Agenda, Community Living
A Values Perspective
All people have the right the live in and participate in the community with the supports they need. We believe it is a basic human and civil right for people with disabilities to have full and equal participation in society as called for in the Americans with Disabilities Act and the United National Declaration of Human Rights. Children with disabilities belong with families. Adults with disabilities have the right to pursue the same range of lifestyles and opportunities as other members of the community. And TASH believes public policy should support these rights.
Children and adults with disabilities should have opportunities to develop relationships with neighbors, classmates, co-workers and community members. Adults, whether married or single, should make decisions about where and with whom they live. The preferences of each individual should be honored in regards to their decisions on community life and participation.
Individuals with disabilities and families must be entitled to quality educational supports, decent and affordable housing, financial security, recreation and employment. To this end, TASH supports the closing of institutions and other segregated settings, including segregated work settings, while working to ensure that people have meaning choices and opportunities in the communities in which they live.
What We’re Doing
TASH works to accomplish our shared vision by influencing policy and practice, and supporting practitioners, families and people with disabilities who embody the vision. In order for all adults with extensive support needs to live valued lives in communities, TASH works with federal agencies and congress to influence Medicaid and systems change reform to emphasize the provision of personalized supports for individualized lives in homes of their choosing. Our current priorities are:
- Ensuring quality implementation and enforcement of Home and Community Based Waiver regulations
- Prioritizing the use of federal funds to support integrated employment outcomes
- Supporting continued implementation of the Olmstead Decision
TASH publications, online training, and regional and annual conferences provide many opportunities throughout the year for people to adopt new attitudes, develop skills and open to a world of possibility. You never know what’s going to trigger change, but often the best catalyst is the success of a person who was once limited by segregation and low expectations. These success stories are prevalent in TASH’s membership, and these members and family members share their stories in publications and training. Once people expand their understanding of what’s possible with support, the skills necessary to provide and direct supports can be learned.
Many people have pursued lives of meaning and value in their communities with the active support of their families, support staff and others who share their vision. Many of these individuals are TASH members, and act as a community of practice, supporting each other to solve problems, work with systems, blend funds, and pioneer new ways of facilitating community and belonging. Throughout the year, they convene monthly as part of the TASH community living committee.
The TASH annual conference includes the Community Gathering, which is two days of open-source learning and sharing. For these inventors of a new way of being, the Gathering provides both inspiration and direction for advancing good lives for all people.
TASH also recognizes two people annually as recipients of the Larry J. Brumond Supportive Relationship Award, which honors two individuals who have maintained a mutually supportive relationship in which the dreams and aspirations of the support recipient are supported in that person’s chosen home and community.