Supported Decision-Making News


NEW Report from the Social Security Advisory Board "Improving Social Security’s Representative Payee Program"
New Social Security Advisory Board Report recommends more study and use of Supported Decision-Making! (see pp. 21-22)

NEW Publication: Supported Decision-Making: Implications from Positive Psychology for Assessment and Intervention in Rehabilitation and Employmentg
This article, by Hatice Uyanik, Karrie Shogren, and Peter Blanck, reviews existing literature on positive psychology, supported decision-making (SDM), employment, and disability. It examines interventions and assessments that have been empirically evaluated for the enhancement of decision-making and overall well-being of people with disabilities. Additionally, conceptual themes present in the literature were explored.

NEW Video Supported Decision Making from Transitions Tennessee
Screen Shot Video Supported Decision Making

NEW Story of Supported Decision-Making: Suzie’s Story
Suzanne Heck wanted her rights back… and in the process the 22-year-old from Lexington became a pioneer and role model for those like her in Kentucky.


Supported Decision Making in Action throughout the LifeSpan -TASH Conference
Tina Campanella and Morgan K. Whitlatch Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Presentation on Supported Decision-Making at the Family Voice Family Leadership Conference
Morgan K. Whitlatch Thursday, November 16, 2017

Presentation on Supported Decision-Making at the National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care Annual Conference
Morgan K. Whitlatch Sunday, November 5, 2017

Defining SDM and older adults, integrating SDM into advance care planning at the annual ABA National Aging and Law Conference
Morgan K. Whitlatch and Jonathan G. Martinis, in partnership with ABA Commission on Law and Aging presenters Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Supported Decision-Making: Update On U.S. Trends And Best Practices at the CQL Annual Conference
Morgan K. Whitlatch Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Supported Decision-Making: Practical Tips for Implementation at the National Guardianship Association Annual Conference
Morgan K. Whitlatch Monday, October 16, 2017

Presentation on Supported Decision-Making for the DC Office of Aging Senior Service Network and ARDC
Morgan K. Whitlatch Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Guardianship and Supported Decision Making Webinar
Tina Campanella presents a webinar on Guardianship and Supported Decision-Making with Barbara Kleist from University of Minnesota – Twin Cities. This webinar is being sponsored by the American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (AAIDD) and their Legal Advocacy and Process Interest Network.
Thursday, September 28, 2017


NEW Video Series: Introduction and Guide to Supported Decision Making with Jonathan Martinis
The Minnesota Department of Human Services has produced a series of YouTube videos, available to anyone, about supporting the rights of people with disabilities and others to make choices about their lives. The videos feature Jonathan Martinis, senior director for law and policy at the Burton Blatt Institute at Syracuse University. They are part of Minnesota’s efforts to support planning and services that promote choice and integration.

NEW Resource: South Australian Supported Decision-Making Training: Adelaide
This research brief was prepared by Dr Piers Gooding as part of the Unfitness to Plead Project at the Melbourne Social Equity Institute, which is being conducted in partnership with the Disability Rights Initiative at the University of Melbourne.

NEW Publication: Future Directions in Supported Decision-Making
This article, by Dr. Anna Arstein-Kerslake, Dr. Joanne Watson, Michelle Browning, Jonathan Martinis, and Professor Peter Blanck, explores the theoretical foundations of supported decision-making and the evolution of supported decision-making research. It explains the research that is emerging in leading jurisdictions, the United States and Australia, and its potential to transform disability services and laws related to decision-making.

NEW Resource for Parents: "Supported Decision Making Teams: Setting the Wheels in Motion."
This paper, by Suzanne M. Francisco, Special Education and Disability Rights Advocate & Jonathan G. Martinis, Esquire, is about your options and actions you can take to help your children make their own decisions and direct their own lives to the maximum of their abilities.

Freedom for Ryan King
In a landmark Court victory, Ryan King won the right to direct his own life, with the support of his family, finally free after 15 years under a guardianship he never needed.

Reports from The National Resource Center's 2015-2016 State Partners
Our Five Partners - Delaware, Indiana, North Carolina, Maine, and Wisconsin have prepared summary reports for their participation in the 2015-2016 Grant Year. See the progress around the nation regarding Supported Decision Making.

Vermont to change culture of disabilities
Jonathan Martinis, BBI’s Senior Director for Law and Policy, Co-Authors Article with Jessalyn Gustin in Apostrophe Magazine.

National Resource Center for Supported Decision-Making is accepting applications for the second year of our State Grant Program
We are pleased to announce that the National Resource Center for Supported Decision-Making is accepting applications for the second year of our State Grant Program. For details, please see the attached funding announcement. The application deadline is September 15, 2016.

NEW Webinar Archive: From Theory to Practice: Supported Decision-Making and Community Based Supports
August 8, 2016, Moderated by Jonathan Martinis; Erica Wood & Marcia Tewell will discuss new and innovative ways for older adults and people with disabilities to receive community-based supports and services that can increase their self-determination, independence, and access to improved life outcomes.

NEW Video: Supported Decision-Making: Protecting Rights, Ensuring Choices
What does person centered planning mean when a person might have difficulty making choices? With statistics and individual cases, Jonathan Martinis challenges his audiences to re-think how they perceive risk, protection, and capacity for persons living with disabilities. Participants will gain an understanding of how less restrictive alternatives can be created, and make the most of an individual’s capabilities and supports. Jonathan Martinis is Senior Director for Law and Policy at the Burton Blatt Institute, Syracuse University.

NEW Resource: Announcing The PRACTICAL Tool for Lawyers - Steps in Supporting Decision-Making
The PRACTICAL Tool aims to help lawyers identify and implement decision-making options for people with disabilities that are less restrictive than guardianship. It is a joint product of four American Bar Association entities – the Commission on Law and Aging, Commission on Disability Rights, Section on Civil Rights and Social Justice, and Section on Real Property, Trust and Estate Law, with assistance from the National Resource Center for Supported Decision-Making. Take a look!

Webinar Archive: From Theory to Practice: Supported Decision-Making and Financial Decisions
On June 29, Lori Smetanka & Michael Morris discuss ways that older adults and people with disabilities can access supports and services to make financial decisions and manage their money.

Webinar Archive: Supported Decision-Making in Education
On May 25, 2016, attorney Morgan Whitlatch and advocate Laura Smith Butler, who have worked to include Supported Decision-Making and self-determination into school curriculums, tell stories of triumph and struggle that are applicable to professionals across the country.

NEW: Final Results from our Supported Decision-Making Survey
SDM is increasingly being advocated for and used in the field, there is a critical need for valid and reliable empirical evidence regarding (1) best practices in SDM, including effective and challenging “support structures and methods; and (2) whether people who engage in SDM are more autonomous, experience better life satisfaction, and achieve meaningful community living and participation.

In The News: Supported Decision-Making Law Approved by the Knesset (Israel's parliament)
The law recognizes supported decision making as a new legal tool, which will come into effect in two years. The law briefly defines the supporter’s functions – help with obtaining information, help with understanding the information and the available alternatives and help executing the decision and expressing it to third parties.
Read the news release and supporting documentation

NEW Video: Making Healthcare Choices: Perspectives of People with Disabilities
Produced by the American Civil Liberties Union

NEW: Presentation Supported Decision-Making: Protecting Rights, Ensuring Choices, Securing Safety
On March 23, Tina Campanella, Chief Executive Officer, Quality Trust for Individuals with Disabilities presented at American Society on Aging (ASA) Conference Washington, D.C.
More Information and Presentation

NEW: Guest Blog - "Success for Monica in Michigan"
On April 6, 2015, Michigan Protection and Advocacy Service, Inc. (MPAS) was successful in terminating the guardianship of a 27-year-old woman in Jackson, MI.
View the Impact Story

NEW Resource: Supported Decision Making in California: Questions and Answers
Find answers to some of the most frequently asked questions regarding Supported Decision-Making. We have compiled an F and Q based on some of the questions we receive
View the F & Q's

NEW Resource: Supported Decision Making Brainstorming Guide
This tool can help people brainstorm ways that they are already using supported decision-making, and think about new ways supported decision-making could help the person with a disability learn to make their own safe, informed choices.
View the Tool

NEW Resource: Supported Decision-Making Model Agreements
These Samples only meant to be model forms. We recommend that you speak with an attorney before completing any form to make sure that your form meets all legal requirements
View the Model Agreements

NEW Resource: The Autistic Self Advocacy Network’s Supported Decision-Making toolkit
ASAN has released a new toolkit discussing supported decision-making (SDM) and guardianship, and the many different laws pertaining to both in the United States and internationally. The toolkit is called “The Right to Make Choices: International Laws and Decision-Making by People with Disabilities.”
View the Toolkit

NEW: Supported Decision-Making in the News
DRTx Legal Director interviewed on Time Warner News Capital Tonight program: Many people think that guardianship is the best way to help adults with intellectual or developmental disabilities make important decisions. The truth is, guardianship is often not necessary. Learn more about the new guardianship reform laws passed in Texas that will give people with disabilities more independence
View the Video

NEW Training: Winning the Case for Supported Decision-Making
National Consumer Law Center® (NCLC®) Webinar regarding Supported Decision-Making. This webinar will help you learn how to "win the case" for Supported Decision-Making at three critical stages: (1) when helping the people you work with access supports and services to live independently; (2) when a petition for guardianship has been filed; (3) and when the person you're working with is under a guardianship.
View the Webinar

NEW: ADALive! The Interplay between Guardianship and the ADA
On October 7, ADALive!, The Southeast ADA Center's monthly broadcast. Jonathan Martinis, Legal Director for Quality Trust for Individuals with Disabilities and the Project Director, National Resource Center for Supported Decision-Making discussed the relationship between guardianship and the ADA. Topics included: What rights do persons with disabilities have under a guardianship? What are the alternatives to guardianship if I think it’s too restrictive? What is supported decision making? How does it work? What other issues do I need to think about that will enable a person with a disability to live more independently in the community?
Listen to the show