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Providing information, education, and training to build knowledge, develop skills, and change attitudes that will lead to increased independence, productivity, self determination, integration and inclusion (IPSII) for people with developmental disabilities and their families.

Positive Behavior Supports

Welcome to the Positive Supports section, dedicated to the class members of the Jensen Settlement Agreement.

A. The Jensen settlement agreement called for a review of best practices related to positive support strategies:

(1) Within sixty (60) days from the date of the Order approving this Agreement, the Department shall organize and convene a Rule 40 (Minn. R. 9525.2700-.2810) Advisory Committee ("Committee") comprised of stakeholders, including parents, independent experts, DHS representatives, the Ombudsman for Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities, the Minnesota Governor's Council on Developmental Disabilities, Minnesota Disability Law Center, Plaintiffs' counsel and others as agreed upon by the parties, to study, review and advise the Department on how to modernize Rule 40 to reflect current best practices, including, but not limited to the use of positive and social behavioral supports, and the development of placement plans consistent with the principle of the "most integrated setting" and "person centered planning, and development of an 'Olmstead Plan'" consistent with the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Olmstead v. L.C, 527 U.S. 582 (1999). The Committee's review of best practices* shall include the Arizona Department of Economic Security, Division of Developmental Disabilities, Policy and Procedures Manual, Policy 1600 Managing Inappropriate Behaviors.

(2) Within sixty (60) days from the date of the Court's approval of this Agreement, a public notice of intent to undertake administrative rule making will be issued.

(3) DHS will not seek a waiver of Rule 40 for the Facility.

* Best Practices: Best practices means generally accepted professional standards."

B. The work of the Rule 40 committee began with a review paper of all state rules and regulations governing aversive procedures written by Michael Mayer.

Rule 40 Advisory Committee Meeting on April 2, 2012 published by the Minnesota Department of Human Services

C. Rule 40 Advisory Committee Recommendations on Best Practices and Modernization of Rule 40

The Rule 40 Advisory Committee has finalized their recommendations on best practices and the modernization of Rule 40. This document includes the history of the Committee and its charge in relation to the Jensen Settlement Agreement, and the principles that will be applied to programs and services licensed or certified by the Department of Human Services.

July 29, 2013

Mike MayerD. On February 6, 2013, Michael Mayer visited the Minnesota Governor's Council on Developmental Disabilities and was interviewed. Mike Mayer was a senior partner of Community Resource Alliance and clinical director of the ACT Process in the State of Illinois. The video interview was conducted February 6, 2013.

Video Interview with Mike Mayer

Mike Mayer passed away on November 16, 2015 at his home in North Carolina.

April 18, 2013

F. Previously Dr. Mayer's colleague, Derrick Dufresne, was interviewed. He described the evolution of practices from B.F. Skinner to the current time. Derrick Dufresne is the founder and a Senior Partner of Community Resource Associates, Inc. (CRA), a training and management consulting firm that is dedicated to promoting full community inclusion for individuals with disabilities.

Video interview with Derrick Dufresne, conducted February 1, 2012.

March 20, 2012

Derrick Dufresne

G. Dr. Herbert Lovett promoted inclusive supports and equal access in the areas of education, employment, housing, and human rights for children and adults with disabilities. He traveled worldwide, consulting and speaking about the fundamental changes in the way that people with behavioral difficulties are viewed and treated.

Herb Lovett
Herb Lovett

Video interview with Dr. Herb Lovett, conducted with Larry Ringer, Minnesota Disability Law Center, in 1987

H. In a 1987 video interview with Ed Skarnulis, Rosemary and Gunnar Dybwad talk about the development of "aversive conditioning" in the United States.

I. The Jensen settlement agreement specifically referenced The Association of Positive Behavior Supports as a benchmark.

The Association for Positive Behavior Support

K. Georgia, Minnesota, and Vermont have published positive behavior support manuals:

Guidelines For Supporting Adults With Challenging Behaviors in Community Setting, A Resource Manual for Georgia's Community Programs Serving Persons with Serious and Persistent Mental Health Issues And Serving Persons with Mental Retardation or Developmental Disabilities

Guidelines for Positive Supports in DHS-Licensed Settings was developed by the Disability Services Division, Community Supports Administration, Minnesota Department of Human Services.

Behavior Support Guidelines For Support Workers published by The State of Vermont Department of Disabilities, Aging & Independent Living

L. Michigan has published guidelines about person centered planning:

Person Centered Planning Policy and Practice Guideline published by the Michigan Department of Community Health Mental Health and Substance Abuse Administration

M. Minnesota Department of Human Services Respect and Dignity Practices Statement (June 20, 2013) is a result of the Jensen Settlement Agreement and the work of the Rule 40 Advisory Committee to modernize Rule 40 around best practices regarding positive behavioral supports.

N. Minnesota's Positive Support Rule was officially published on August 31, 2015 and is available for review at

The Positive Support Rule is the result of significant work on the part of the Rule 40 Advisory Committee, convened in accordance with the Jensen Settlement Agreement, "to modernize Rule 40 to reflect current best practices, including, but not limited to the use of positive and social behavioral supports, and the development of placement plans consistent with the principle of the "most integrated setting" and "person centered planning, and development of an 'Olmstead Plan.' "

The "Full Chapter Text" can be accessed via a link at the right side bar.

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The GCDD is funded under the provisions of P.L. 106-402. The federal law also provides funding to the Minnesota Disability Law Center, the state Protection and Advocacy System, and to the Institute on Community Integration, the state University Center for Excellence. The Minnesota network of programs works to increase the IPSII of people with developmental disabilities and families into community life.

This project was supported, in part by grant number 2001MNSCDD-03, from the U.S. Administration for Community Living, Department of Health and Human Services, Washington, D.C. 20201. Grantees undertaking projects with government sponsorship are encouraged to express freely their findings and conclusions. Points of view or opinions do not, therefore, necessarily represent official ACL policy.

This website is supported by the Administration for Community Living (ACL),  U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of a financial assistance award totaling $1,120,136.00 with 83 percent funded by ACL/HHS and $222,000.00 and 17 percent funded by non-federal-government source(s). The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by ACL/HHS, or the U.S. Government.