Our Resolution in Support of the Community Imperative

WHEREAS the membership of Service Employees International Union includes persons with developmental disabilities, their service providers, family members, friends and neighbors; and

WHEREAS Service Employees International Union members, officers, and staff believe that no person should be denied the opportunity to live in and participate in the greater community because of a developmental or other disability due to the lack of appropriate community service and supports; and

WHEREAS the Community Imperative is a refutation of all arguments in support of institutionalizing anyone because of mental retardation which states

In the domain of human rights:

  • all people have fundamental moral and constitutional rights;
  • these rights must not be abrogated merely because a person has a mental or physical disability;
  • among these fundamental rights is the right to community living;

In the domain of educational programming and human services;

  • all people, as human beings, are inherently valuable;
  • all people can grow and develop;
  • all people are entitled to conditions which foster their development;
  • such conditions are optimally provided in community settings.

In the fulfillment of fundamental human rights and in securing optimum developmental opportunities, all people, regardless of the severity of their disabilities, are entitled to community living.

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that Service Employees International Union will continue to fight for quality community services for all persons with developmental disabilities by:

  • working to insure that our members and direct support staff are trained to understand and support this imperative;
  • working to establish a stable and qualified work force in the community, by establishing working conditions for direct support staff that meet the standards that institutional workers now receive, including wages, benefits, the right to have a union voice on the job, retirement, career advancement opportunities and training;
  • working to insure that in the transition to community services, the skilled and dedicated workers currently working in institutional settings are provided with the opportunity to work in the community with comparable employment standards and any necessary training, or retrained in comparable alternative positions within their employer elsewhere.

AND BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED that Service Employees International Union
supports the principles of the Community Imperative.

Submitted by SEIU Local 535
Oakland, California

Submitted by: Local 535
Adopted by: Convention on June 21, 2002

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