The Tennessee Council on Developmental Disabilities is asking for public input on the work it will be doing for the next five years.

“Our work is guided by the goals in our five-year state plan,” Executive Director Wanda Willis said. “Before we write a new plan, we survey the entire state. We want to know how disability services are working. What’s going well? What needs to change? Where are the gaps? What matters most to people living with disability in our state?”

The Council gathers this input through an online survey, available in English at bit.ly/PublicInput2020 and Spanish at bit.ly/SpanInput2020.

“This is a chance for people to give feedback that guides real work for change,” Willis said. “Hearing from more, and more diverse, people helps us get the best picture of where the needs are. It helps us keep working to improve our state’s disability services system.”

The Council works on issues that cover the whole lifespan, from early intervention for babies to special education to adult services and aging.

“It’s so important for us to hear from people who are in all those stages, who have all different types of disabilities, who have all different kinds of identities and life experiences,” Willis said.

The Council’s survey will be open until the end of September. Once it is complete, the Council will use results to guide its new five-year state plan, which will begin in 2021.

There will be a chance for the public to comment on the new draft plan before it is final. Follow the Council on Facebook or Twitter for news about the process.

The Council will also use the results of its public input survey to form a “snapshot of disability services” in Tennessee. That snapshot will be sent to the federal government, along with the state plan, and shared with the public.

For questions or help filling out the public input survey, call Council Program Operations Director Alicia Cone at 615-253-1105.

—TCDD

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