PDD Announcement Reassures Families

June 5, 2013


For Immediate Release:


PDD Announcement Reassures Families                     


EDMONTON, June 5, 2013 – Alberta Association for Community Living (AACL), which represents the interests of thousands of families who have sons and daughters with developmental disabilities, and has done so for nearly 60 years, commends Minister Dave Hancock and Associate Minister Frank Oberle for listening to the concerns of families and individuals with developmental disabilities by ensuring needed PDD funding and supports will continue to be available.  As an organization of families we support what will be now a far more timely and well-planned transformation of PDD to a more effective system that will enable individuals with developmental disabilities to enjoy the security and benefit of an inclusive life.  


Ms. Robin Acton, AACL President and the parent of an adult daughter with developmental disabilities stated, “With stability in funding, time to plan, and fear lifted from our hearts, we are prepared, as families, to be leaders and partners with government and community in achieving needed changes so the dreams of our son and daughters, brothers and sisters, and grandchildren can be more fully realized.”


AACL’s work, which has been nationally and internationally recognized, and that of others in Alberta, has successfully demonstrated that many more individuals with developmental disabilities can be meaningfully employed and engaged inclusively in the community than is currently the case.  We have been encouraged by the efforts of many Alberta post-secondary institutions to offer inclusion that results in high rates of employment and that of business leaders in working with us to create valued employment opportunities for individuals with developmental disabilities, including those with significant developmental disabilties.  It is essential in Alberta’s plans for change there be a focus in building on and expanding the successes achieved to date, in contrast to  wholesale rapid reductions in funding and supports. 


Bruce Uditsky, AACL CEO and the parent of an adult son with developmental disabilities, said, “There is a need for progressive change but the possibility of achieving improvements cannot be accomplished in an environment of crisis and fear.  Now that families have been heard it is time to move our actions that were rooted in fear into actions that transform communities into welcoming places of belonging.”