|Our Vision and Mission|
That people with developmental disabilities and their families realize the promise of integration, productivity, independence and quality of life choices.
To dream, plan, work, mobilize and organize with people with developmental disabilities, their families, and supporting communities and organizations to make the promise of inclusion, integration, productivity, independence and quality of life a reality in policy and practice.
AFP’s member organizations have diverse histories, leadership, members and priorities, but they are ultimately working toward the same end. In 2005, AFP hosted a Summit around the theme, “Many Voices, One Vision.” For the first time in history, our organizations came together to host a national Summit to create a social agenda and action plan for fulfilling its mission. Over 2,400 people gathered in Washington, DC to help craft a strategic policy and social agenda in support of full participation, and to carry forward and implement that agenda in their communities.
In the fall of 2011, AFP will once again host a Summit, this time focused on making fully integrated employment a reality for all people with disabilities. Leading up to the Summit, AFP will sponsor national and state-wide town halls and other initiatives to make our employment vision a reality.
Our Vision for Employment
Employment expectations for individuals with developmental disabilities will be the same as those for people without disabilities. Education settings will assist in raising these expectations by providing information, supports and job experiences to all students.
In all instances the individual will be the focus of the employment process. Discovering interests, experiences and skills are important facets of the job search. Customization, choice and individualized and natural supports help ensure job satisfaction and retention. Career development will be a consideration throughout the job process.
Employment will be in regular, competitive and inclusive employment settings. Frequent and ongoing interactions and the development of relationships are expected. Compensation will be at least minimum wage, up to the prevailing wage for the work performed. Wages and benefits will be comparable to coworkers performing similar tasks.
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Best Emerging Practices
While spending on disability-related services has increased over the past decade, fewer resources go to employment for people with the most significant developmental disabilities. AFP’s role in highlighting the best emerging practices and policies, including customized employment, microenterprise ownership, personal budgets, and employment first initiatives, provides the benchmark for progress as we enter this new decade.