FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 12, 2023
DDS Releases 1st Video in Series on Technologies/Supports Available to Individuals Through New STEP Initiative
Series features CT residents using supports to live and work more independently
(Hartford, CT) - The Connecticut Department of Developmental Services (DDS) today announced the release of the first in a series (link to first video) of short videos that highlight assistive technologies and other supports available to DDS-eligible individuals with intellectual disability through its STEP (Supporting Transformation to Empower People) initiative. The videos showcase real individuals and their families who are using STEP supports to achieve greater independence in their home and work lives.
The video series is part of a DDS system-wide effort, known as STEP, to transform its programs and services. STEP highlights supports that allow individuals with intellectual disability to live more fulfilling, independent lives of their own choosing in their family home, own home, or other community-based setting. At the same time, DDS will continue to support individuals with significant support needs in group homes and other congregate settings.
“It is sometimes hard to envision yourself or your loved one living more independently. We hope these real-life stories will demonstrate how these technologies and supports highlighted through STEP can help individuals live even more independent and integrated lives in the community of their choosing,” said DDS Commissioner Jordan Scheff. “Individuals with intellectual disability are valued members of our community who should have the opportunity to lead rich and fulfilling lives. STEP is here to support them in achieving that greater independence.”
Starting this week, DDS will release one video each week featuring one of the seven STEP core supports:
- Individualized Home Supports (IHS)
- Community Companion Homes (CCH)
- Supportive Housing
- Assistive Technology
- Remote Supports
The STEP videos and other resources available to individuals and families will be accessible through the DDS STEP website, distributed directly to DDS’ provider partners and other community organizations, and posted to DDS’ social media platforms.
STEP is part of a larger transformational initiative being undertaken by DDS in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Using federal funds made available to states through the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), DDS is working with providers across Connecticut to fundamentally shift and expand the continuum of supports to serve as many individuals as possible in the most independent settings possible. By providing assistive technologies and supports to individuals who can live and work more independently, DDS will be able to lessen the reliance on congregate settings and reduce waitlists for services.
To learn more about STEP visit: www.ct.gov/STEP