“The Best Outcome We’ve Had”: Key Themes From A Self-Advocate Summit On Community Living

June 2019
Austistic Self-Advocacy Network (ASAN)
The logo of ASAN

This report describes and examines themes discussed during a self-advocate summit on community living for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, or I/DD. The Community Living Summit, a two-day moderated discussion, was hosted by the Autistic Self Advocacy Network (ASAN) and funded by the University of California, San Francisco's Community Living Policy Center.

The purpose of the summit was:

  • for autistic self-advocates ourselves to develop a definition of "community living,"
  • to determine what supports, ideas, relationships, and systems are necessary for successful community living, and
  • to provide recommendations on how researchers and policymakers could foster true community living among autistic people and other people with I/DD.

We invited 10 autistic self-advocates to our summit and interviewed or utilized the blog posts of an additional 4 autistic self-advocates. The primary themes of the discussion included self-determination, autonomy, housing, employment and economic opportunity, accessibility, policy barriers, and avenues for future research on disability and community living.

This report will demonstrate how each of these themes relate to community living and will describe what autistic self-advocates felt to be the most important aspects of each of these themes. We hope that this report will therefore guide policymakers and service providers as they attempt to establish best practices for providing supports and services in the community to autistic people and other people with I/DD.

Last modified Jun 17, 2019