Florida ARF and the Florida Alliance for Direct Support Professionals (FADSP) Celebrate 2022 Direct Support Professional Week

Tallahassee, FL (September 12, 2022) September 11-17 is Direct Support Professional (DSP) Recognition Week. In celebration of this event, Florida ARF and the Florida Alliance for Direct Support Professionals (FADSP) hereby recognize DSPs who make a meaningful difference in the lives of the people they serve. Their stories clearly communicate the loving attitude and dedication of DSPs who give so freely of themselves to serve others. DSPs are the backbone of long-term supports and services for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) in the State of Florida. We truly value and appreciate the services and sacrifices DSPs make to ensure that others needs are met.

During the week, the Association will feature a select number of DSPs who are making a difference across Florida; we also want to acknowledge there are many deserving DSPs that should be recognized for the outstanding work they do on a daily basis to care for loved ones served by our member agencies. The Association is pleased to announce Governor Ron DeSantis has signed a proclamation recognizing Direct Support Professional Recognition Week. DeSantis stated “Direct Support Professionals Recognition Week in Florida is an important opportunity to recognize those who dedicate their lives to providing support and services to our loved ones and improving their communities, including their efforts during public health emergencies.” We could not agree with Governor DeSantis more!

To all the DSPs across Florida, we offer a hearty “Thank you for all that you do!”


Florida ARF Hopes to See You At the Annual Conference

Tallahassee, FL (August 31, 2022) Florida ARF is excited to see you at our 46th Annual Conference on September 21st and 22nd in Clearwater Beach. During the conference, the Association will discuss many important topics during our Forum Meetings which you will not want to miss. Our Government Relations Forum will be discussing and developing the Association’s 2023 Platform as well as discussing strategy in preparation for the 2023 Legislative Session. We will also elect new Board members and Officers and host the Annual Awards luncheon to recognize the accomplishments of your peers and participants in the RESPECT program. Also, this is the perfect opportunity for you to network with your peers. We look forward to seeing you in September for the 46th Annual Conference!


Cheers to 30 Years

Tallahassee, FL (July 25, 2022) On July 22nd, the Florida Association of Rehabilitation Facilities d/b/a RESPECT of Florida celebrated Contracts & Finance Manager Nancy Perlman on her 30th anniversary with RESPECT. During Nancy’s tenure with RESPECT she has worn many hats and seen many changes, but the one thing that has remained constant for 30 years is her advocacy for the RESPECT program to further employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities. Staff lean on Nancy for advice and historical data on how to handle various aspects of the service contracts segment of the program. Her knowledge is instrumental in the operations of  RESPECT. Florida ARF and RESPECT of Florida thank Nancy for her years of service and look forward to many more years together to expand employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities. 


Florida ARF Reflects on the 23rd Anniversary of the Olmstead Ruling

Tallahassee, FL (June 22, 2022) The right to live independently, integrated into the community, is a cornerstone of the disability rights movement. For decades, people with disabilities have worked to turn this into a reality. Looking at this history, certain moments stand out as turning points. For example, the passage and implementation of landmark legislation including the Americans with Disabilities Act, Rehabilitation Act, Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, and Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Act have each helped make community living possible for more Americans. Today, Florida ARF celebrates the anniversary of another important milestone. Twenty three years ago, the Supreme Court ruled in Olmstead v L.C. that people with disabilities cannot be unnecessarily segregated into institutions and must receive services in the most integrated setting possible. The Olmstead decision opened the door to innovations and programs that make services and supports more available, allowing people to live the lives they choose, in the communities they choose, with family and friends. Florida ARF strives to fulfill Olmstead’s promise and to make a difference in the lives of Floridians with disabilities.