A team of individuals from Texas participated in a regional self-advocacy summit in Chicago April 19-20, 2012, that brought together people from seven states to identify their unique strengths and challenges, share information, and lay the groundwork for improving statewide self-advocacy initiatives. This was one of nine Envisioning the Future: Allies in Self Advocacy summits held across the nation by the Administration for Developmental Disabilities (which recently changed its name to the Administration on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities).
During the summits, state teams worked together to develop next steps that can be taken to strengthen self-advocacy in their state. The teams also developed recommendations for activities and policies to strengthen self-advocacy at the national level, and discussed the roles, functions and needed supports for the growing self-advocacy movement.
Each summit included a group of state teams that represented self-advocacy organizations, state Developmental Disability Networks (DD Councils, Protection and Advocacy Organizations, and University Centers for Excellence), and other key state leaders.
The Texas team represented:
- ADAPT of Texas
- The Arc of Texas
- Autistic Self Advocacy Network
- Center on Disability and Development at Texas A&M University
- Coalition of Texans with Disabilities
- Community Now!
- Department of Aging & Disability Services
- Disability Rights Texas
- National Youth Leadership Network
- Self Advocates Becoming Empowered
- Texas Advocates
- Texas Center for Disability Studies at The University of Texas at Austin
- Texas Council for Developmental Disabilities
- Texas State Independent Living Center
At the summit, the Texas team presented an overview of the state’s accomplishments, strengths and challenges in self-advocacy. This presentation and more information on the summits are available on the Allies in Self-Advocacy website. The Texas team’s recommendations will be added to the website soon.