Save community living, help make rental choice a real choice for all Albertans
This petition had 956 supporters
I am concerned about what’s happening to housing for Albertans who have developmental disabilities. Standard 8 of the PDD (Persons with Developmental Disabilities) Safety Standards Regulation is putting those who receive 24 hour supports at risk of losing their homes. This is the result of another decision made for people with disabilities, without asking what they think. The recent STANDATA update to the provincial Building Code is reclassifying private homes as care facilities, turning our homes in the community into institutions.
For many years Alberta has been a place where people with developmental disabilities can freely choose to live in a home of their own. Many of our service providers were founded by families and faith groups to ensure we were part of our community, not institutional inmates.
People with disabilities can rent a home, like any Albertan, and live on our own because of the support of a community service provider. Rental homes must meet the same safety standards that they would for any other Albertans. Service providers are accredited through the Alberta Council of Disability Services (ACDS) Creating Excellence Together or other standards to help people be safe and have good lives in the community.
To protect community living and inclusion for people with developmental disabilities in Alberta, I ask that our new government stop the PDD Safety Standards and for this and other reasons start an MLA-led stakeholder review of Alberta’s PDD system.
· Government decision-making should never make people with developmental disabilities have to choose between the supports they need and the privacy of their home because the government made health and fire inspections mandatory without any just cause. This is not forced on any other Albertan receiving government-funded services in their home.
· Government decision-making should include full consultation with marginalized Albertans.
· Marginalized Albertans in a difficult rental market should not be singled out for inspections and resulting costly renovations that will only make landlords more reluctant to rent to a person with a disability.
· No one should be expected to pay for costly renovations, such as sprinkler systems, for little documented benefit when trained staff can provide any extra help needed in an emergency.
The PDD Safety Standards Regulations are unreasonable and should be suspended until after an MLA-led stakeholder review of Alberta’s PDD system. People can be as safe as others in the community without unreasonable and costly standards. A home in the community should not be treated like an institution. Government decision-making can and must change to ensure that unfortunate consequences like this are prevented from happening in the first place. Stop, look and listen to Albertans with disabilities.
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