RI DD Service Providers Launch "Community Conversations" To Promote Effective Advocacy

On Tuesday,  Aug. 7 in Warren, RI, The Community Provider Network of Rhode Island (CPNRI), will hold the first of several “community conversations”  to focus on priorities for adults with developmental disabilities.

The event, from noon to 1:30 p.m. Tuesday, will be at The BRASS, an art gallery at 16 Cutler St., Warren.

CPNRI describes the “community conversations” as forums to engage adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities, their families, friends, direct support staff, and any others interested in becoming more effective advocates.  

The BRASS, the site of the first meeting, is a gallery featuring work of artists with developmental disabilities who are supported by  L.I.F.E. (Living in Fulfilling Environments).

L.I.F.E. and Looking Upwards, another East Bay provider of services for adults with developmental disabilities, are co-sponsors of Tuesday’s event.  

The remaining schedule for the community meetings has not yet been firmed up, according to Michael Beauregard, a spokesman for CPNRI, a trade organization for about two dozen, or two thirds, of private providers of services for adults with developmental disabilities in Rhode Island. 

In May, CPNRI sponsored a rally that drew about 1000 people to the State House to call for restoration of an $18.4 million cut to developmental disability services that was then under consideration by the House and Senate. Almost all the money has been put back into the budget which went into effect July 1.

But wages for front-line workers remain flat – at an average of roughly $11.50 an hour –at a time when federal officials are pressing for more raining and higher quality services as part of a 10-year mandated overhaul of the developmental disability system to comply with the Americans With Disabilities Act.

Anyone interested in attending Tuesday’s meeting is asked to RSVP  here.

CPNRI also may be reached at 401-773-7771.