Respecting Rights: My Voice My Choice Welcome Newsletter
October 10, 2019.
Welcome to the Respecting Rights: My Voice My Choice Mailing list!
This newsletter is for people labeled with intellectual disabilities and their support networks to learn about legal decision making rights.
This is a place where you will find resources about the rights of persons labelled with intellectual disabilities and news on work we are doing across the province to promote people’s right to make their own decisions and be fully respected.
We will share videos, pictures and tips to uphold your rights, and the rights of people in your lives.
Please share this email with anyone you know who would also like to be on our mailing list. We are building a strong rights community across the province. Together we can do some amazing things!
Respecting Rights is a project at ARCH Disability Law Centre, led by persons with disabilities. We work in what we call a triple scoop way, with three voices working together to improve access to rights for persons labeled with an intellectual disability: Self-advocates, ARCH lawyers, Social workers specializing in rights advocacy.
We provide legal rights education for persons labeled with intellectual disabilities and their support networks. We also do what we call Accessible Law Reform. In this work, we work with persons with disabilities and their communities across the province to try and make the laws better for persons with disabilities.
We are busy working on innovative rights education projects. We like to keep our community up-to-date with our work.
This section in our newsletter is dedicated to letting you know about our latest activities, and share what we have learned and other important news.
Staff & Family Corner
Persons with disabilities have told us that they often have a family member or staff involved in their decision making. Sometimes persons with disabilities do not believe that they are allowed to make any decisions in their lives.
This section in our newsletter is dedicated to building stronger bridges between persons with disabilities and the persons in their lives who are important to their support and decision making. We will be sharing tips we learn along the way to building a good plan for the future!
Know Your Rights
In each newsletter we will share some information about people’s legal rights to make their own decisions about different aspects of their lives.
What does the law say about people’s right to make decisions about their health, their relationships, and their money?
What does it mean to get support to make your own decisions?
Does the law stop you from making your own decisions if you need support? Read our newsletters to find out!
Respecting Rights in Action
What is Respecting Rights?
Know a Respecting Rights Self-Advocate:
This section is dedicated to introducing you to self-advocates in the community!
We’ll start you off with Peter Park, because he is the founding self-advocate of Respecting Rights. In addition to being a co-founder of Respecting Rights, Peter is known to many of the Godfather of self-advocacy in Ontario.
Peter is an institutional survivor and also the co-founder of People First of Ontario. With a long history of advocacy around the world, Peter decided it was time for self-advocacy and rights to have a new approach.
“Working together with lawyers brings a new power to our rights work. We needed something to make it stronger. Here I am, 40 years later still doing this advocacy work, and we still have a ways to go. People’s rights are still being restricted today in the group homes. I always say – institution is a state of mind, not just a building. The same attitudes of control and taking decisions away from people can happen in the group homes – just like it did in the institutions. I keep dreaming. I’ll never stop dreaming.”
Respecting Rights supports Institutionalization Survivors
March 19, 2019.
Respecting Rights participated in Flying to Freedom to commemorate 10 years since the closure of the last large government-run institutions for people labeled with an intellectual disability, and reflect on how we can commit to creating a fully inclusive society. The event was organized by institutional survivors and several organizations within the disability community, including People First of Ontario.
Respecting Rights spoke to The Journey from Institutionalization, and how they are addressing institutionalization and supporting people who have an intellectual disability to lead meaningful lives in the community.