With all the problems facing us today—globally, across many nations, and in our personal lives—great ideas are required to solve big issues. And despite all the doom and gloom, little by little, and one way or another, we chip away at the difficulties. In some instances, “traditional” solutions no longer work, and innovative, non-traditional ideas emerge, often from unlikely sources.

“Let’s give it a try!” “Why not?” “What we’ve been doing isn't working so great, so let’s do something else.” These and similar sentiments are the rallying cry in many quarters.

Everything written above applies to the issues facing people with disabilities! And is it possible some Great Ideas can come from people with disabilities, themselves?

Years ago, I was a board member of a “community-centered board” (CCB), a regional arm of our state’s human services department, which provides supports and services for people with developmental disabilities. Our board held a jobs summit: local employment providers met with board members, with many interesting and provocative discussions among the 25-or-so people in attendance. Everyone was expected to participate and share their ideas and perspectives, including people with disabilities (like “Nancy”), another board member. Nancy was middle-aged (like me), and she had a cognitive disability (some would say Nancy had a “low IQ”).

During one discussion by providers about the difficulties of “getting jobs” for people with disabilities, Nancy spoke up and said, “Well, the best jobs I ever had were the ones I got for myself.” Wow—what a powerful statement!​ Click here to continue.

Great Ideas

What if we all decided to have a Great Ideas Summit in our homes, our schools, our agencies, and/or other places? What if people with disabilities were asked for their ideas, and what if they were really listened to?

Kathie Snow


New Ways of Thinking and Revolutionary Common Sense

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