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INDEPENDENT LIVING SKILLS
We provide information, resources, classes as well as individual guidance to improve or enhance important daily life activities, such as personal care, transportation options, household management, coping strategies, financial management, assistive technology demonstrations, employment-related topics, accommodations, social and recreational opportunities and so much more.
The Ten Principles of Independent Living
1. Civil Rights – equal rights and opportunities for all; no segregation by disability type or stereotype.
2. Consumerism – a person (“consumer” or “customer”) using or buying a service or product decides what is best for him/herself.
3. De-institutionalization – no person should be institutionalized (formally by a building, program, or family) on the basis of a disability.
4. De-medicalization – individuals with disabilities are not “sick”, as prescribed by the assumptions of the medical model and do not require help from certified medical professionals for daily living.
5. Self-help – people learn and grow from discussing their needs, concerns, and issues with people who have had similar experiences; “professionals” are not the source of help provided.
6. Advocacy – systemic, systematic, long-term, and community-wide change activities are needed to ensure that people with disabilities benefit from all that society has to offer.
7. Barrier-removal – in order for civil rights, consumerism, de-institutionalization, de-medicalization, and self-help to occur, architectural, communication and attitudinal barriers must be removed.
8. Consumer control – the organizations best suited to support and assist individuals with disabilities are governed, managed, staffed and operated by individuals with disabilities.
9. Peer role models – leadership for independent living and disability rights is vested in individuals with disabilities (not parents, service providers or other representatives).
10. Cross-disability – activities designed to achieve the first five principles must be cross-disability in approach, meaning that the work to be done must be carried out by people with different types of disabilities for the benefit of all persons with disabilities.