But for increasing numbers of people, and increasingly in public policy, the bedrock knowledge included the following:

  • Institutions and other large, segregated living arrangements are unacceptable places to live.
  • Any resources available in institutional settings can be made available in community settings.

The evidence and experience of people indicate that life in the community is better than life in institutions in terms of relationships, family contact, frequency and diversity of relationships, individual development, and leisure, recreational, and spiritual resources.

  • All children with developmental disabilities can be supported in natural, adoptive or foster families.
  • Both children and adults benefit from stable relationships with other people, including family members and community members without disabilities.
  • People with developmental disabilities can and do make positive contributions to the life of the community.
Happy child in rocking chair
Photo courtesy William Bronston, M.D.
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