The Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Act (DD Act), requires that the programs authorized under the law are culturally competent to ensure that individuals with developmental disabilities, regardless of background, are full participants in all aspects of community life.
to the DD Act, Sec.
10 1. [42 USC 15001] c Policy.
“It is the policy of the United States that all programs receiving assistance under this title shall be carried out in a manner consistent with the principles that Services, supports, and other assistance should be provided that demonstrate respect for personal preferences, and cultural differences; Specific efforts must be made to ensure that individuals with developmental disabilities from racial and ethnic minority backgrounds and their families enjoy increased and meaningful opportunities to access and use community services, individualized supports available to other individuals with developmental disabilities and their families; Recruitment efforts in disciplines related to developmental disabilities in pre-service training, community training, practice, administration, and Policymaking must focus on bringing larger numbers of racial and ethnic minorities into the disciplines in order to provide appropriate skills, knowledge, role models, and sufficient personnel to address the growing needs of an increasingly diverse population.” The DD Act has long identified the importance of cultural competence and improving expectations and outcomes for people with developmental disabilities, including those from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.
The DD Act throughout requires that the programs authorized address the needs of people from unserved and underserved backgrounds.
Section 101(a) identifies the need to ensure that services, supports, and other assistance are provided in a culturally competent manner and that individuals from racial and ethnic minority backgrounds are fully included in all activities provided under the Act.
The term “culturally competent” is defined in the DD Act of 2000, sec.
Services, supports, or other assistance that is conducted or provided in a manner that is responsive to the beliefs, interpersonal styles, attitudes, language, and behaviors of individuals who are receiving the services, supports, or other assistance, and in a manner that has the greatest likelihood of ensuring their maximum participation in the program involved.
The DD Act of 2000 recognizes the important role that UCEDDs play in enhancing the diversity of the workforce, requiring that UCEDDs coordinate their efforts to recruit and retain underrepresented groups at all levels in order to respond to the changing United States demographics.
This opportunity will fund up to eleven UCEDD Diversity fellowship grants to continue to address the disparities experienced by historically underrepresented communities.
Funds will be used to support the recruitment and retention of trainees from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds to participate in a fellowship experience at the UCEDD with opportunities to make systemic change through a capstone project in community based activities.
AIDD will award NTI grants to pay for the federal share of a diversity fellowship program to support UCEDDs in:
Growing the diversity of its trainee enrollment; Building a cohort of trainees in the UCEDD network from diverse backgrounds; Creating a forum for knowledge exchange and transfer at the UCEDD; and Committing to participate in an AUCD coordinated national forum for knowledge exchange and transfer across the UCEDD network.
The UCEDD will use the funds to recruit at least one trainee from a diverse background to participate in a fellowship program with opportunities to make systemic change through a capstone project in community based activities, organizations, policy and/or programs.
The fellowship should include a formal training experience with mentoring and other opportunities that will engage the trainee in the national network of UCEDDs and support knowledge exchange and transfer in a national forum.