Four statewide organizations in Tennessee partner with one another and with individuals with developmental disabilities and their family members to ensure that they receive the services and supports they need and jointly they take part in planning those services. Together we are working to promote principles of
Each state has a Protection & Advocacy System to empower, protect, and advocate on behalf of persons with disabilities. DLAC advocates for the rights of Tennesseans with disabilities to ensure that they have an equal opportunity to be productive and respected members of our society.
Each state has a Council whose key functions are systems change, capacity building, and advocacy. The Tennessee Council accomplishes these aims through public policy collaboration, community building, a grant program, leadership development, and public awareness.
University Centers for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities Education, Research and Service (UCEDDs)
This network of 64 centers in every U.S. state and territory supports interdisciplinary training, exemplary services, research, and dissemination of information. This network is coordinated by the Association of University Centers on Disabilities. Tennessee is one of the few states that has two Centers for Excellence:
Tennessee Disability Pathfinder provides free information and referral and a searchable web directory of Tennessee services and supports.
Tennessee Featured Projects
This national network of State Councils, Protection and Advocacy, and University Centers for Excellence is supported by the Administration on Developmental Disabilities, U.S. Health and Human Services.
A developmental disability is a condition that is significant and ongoing, begins before age 22, and substantially limits functioning in daily activities of living. Examples include autism, brain or spinal cord injury, cerebral palsy, Down syndrome, fetal alcohol syndrome, intellectual disabilities (mental retardation), Prader-Willi syndrome, spina bifida, Williams syndrome. The Network also serves persons with all types of disabilities, including those whose disabilities occur after age 22.