Health care workers around the world have been working tirelessly since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic to protect the health and wellness of the public. These workers have had to adapt to an overwhelming and unprecedented health crisis, and…
ADA Live! Program Focuses on ‘Supported Decision-Making: From Justice for Jenny to Justice for All!’
“ADA Live!” is a free online program of the Southeast ADA Center, a project of the Burton Blatt Institute at Syracuse University. “ADA Live!” focuses on the rights and responsibilities under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). New episodes are available the first Wednesday of each month on SoundCloud ADA Live! The next episode is available on Dec. 4 at 1 p.m.
Before her rights were taken away, Jenny Hatch had her own apartment, worked, spent time with friends and went to a church of her choice. After a court ordered her into guardianship, Hatch found herself in a group home against her will with her cell phone and laptop taken away, cut off from her friends and not allowed to go to her job and church.
In his new book “Supported Decision-Making: From Justice for Jenny to Justice for All!” (Amazon Digital Services, 2019), Jonathan Martinis, along with Peter Blanck, tells Hatch’s story, including how she lost her rights under guardianship and how she won them back when she showed the court that she uses Supported Decision-Making (SDM) to make her own decisions with help from people she trusts. The authors also show how people can use SDM in their life, with family members or others, including in programs like special education, vocational rehabilitation and person-centered planning.
In 2019, the National Council on Disability reported that 45-55 percent of people with Intellectual and/or developmental disability are under some form of guardianship. “Supported Decision-Making” is a practical guide for family members, human service professionals, and people in or facing guardianship. Martinis and Blanck hope that people with disabilities and their families, friends and professionals will use the book to help develop customized SDM plans that protect the rights of the individual with a disability and empower them to make their own decisions.