ANCOR National Advocacy Campaign

ANCOR's National Advocacy Campaign (NAC) advocates for the resources necessary to recruit, train and retain a healthy, sustainable direct support workforce. It promotes the professionalization of the DSP workforce, and nationwide recognition of and appreciation for the DSPs. Advocacy resources and information about training and events are on the website.

The Arc’s DSP Toolkit

This toolkit addresses several resources that chapters of The Arc, and individuals with disabilities and their family members served by chapters can use to improve their workforce development practices. The Toolkit is essentially free and is completely available for download. The Realistic Job Preview video is available for a yearly licensing fee.

Assessing Direct Support Workforce Retention Outcomes PDF

This tool is intended to help organizations to become more familiar with human resource data related to recruitment and retention. It includes definitions and formulas to help administrators better understand their workforce and how to track the workforce development challenges they are experiencing.

The College of Direct Support (CDS)

Regarded as the gold standard in online training, the College of Direct Support content delivers the best in competency-based training, designed to prepare direct support staff to go above and beyond compliance. CDS is one of four “colleges” within the DirectCourse suite of online curricula, and is operated by the Institute on Community Integration’s Research and Training Center on Community Living (RTC/CL), in partnership with Elsevier.

DirectCourse

DirectCourse provides trusted training that is built on the latest research and delivered online via a powerful learning management system. It provides the ability to easily access, customize, track and assess training across staff. Operated by a partnership of the Institute on Community Integration’s Research and Training Center on Community Living (RTC/CL), and publisher Elsevier, DirectCourse is composed of four colleges: The College of Direct Support, based at the RTC/CL; College of Employment Services, based at the Institute for Community Inclusion, University of Massachusetts Boston; College of Personal Assistance and Caregiving, based at the Center for Personal Assistance Services, University of California, San Francisco; and College of Recovery and Community Inclusion, based at Temple University Collaborative on Community Inclusion for Individuals with Psychiatric Disabilities.

Direct Support: A Realistic Job Preview

This video illustrates the real, everyday work of direct support professionals (DSPs) in the field of developmental disabilities. Produced by ANCOR and the Institute on Community Integration, it is available through licensing for agencies that wish to incorporate it into their online training for staff and potential hires.

Direct Support Worker Survey 2019 Final Report

This is the final report of the results from a statewide survey of direct support workers in Minnesota to better understand wages, benefits, size, and scope of the direct support workforce. The report is written by the Institute on Community Integration, Research and Training Center on Community Living, for the Minnesota Department of Human Services.

Empowering the Direct Support Professional Workforce

A series of articles by the Council on Quality and Leadership.

Fix the DSP Crisis

“Pennsylvania is facing a crisis because government funding for Direct Support Professional (DSP) wages has flatlined for 10 years,” says the website for this advocacy campaign, which is an initiative of Pennsylvania Advocacy and Resources for Autism and Intellectual Disability (PAR). An advocacy toolkit, personal stories, campaign updates, and ways to connect with other advocates can all be found on the website.

Frontline Initiative

This newsletter series for Direct Support Professionals and frontline supervisors covers the issues important to them as they support people with intellectual, developmental, and other disabilities in a variety of community settings. Each feature issue contains resources, perspectives, and strategies to advance the profession of direct support. It’s published by NADSP and the Institute on Community Integration, Research and Training Center on Community Living.

Impact: Feature Issue on the Direct Support Workforce and People with Intellectual, Developmental, and Other Disabilities

This issue of the magazine Impact from the Institute on Community Integration examines some of the workforce problems in our long-term care system and their consequences for people with disabilities, Direct Support Professionals, families, provider agencies, and communities. It shares personal stories of what is and isn’t working for those delivering and receiving supports; looks at creative, bold actions being taken around the country to address those problems; and explores ways to be a collective force for change and ensure that quality supports are there for people with disabilities in all our communities.

The Research and Training Center on Community Living

This center within the University of Minnesota’s Institute on Community Integration works to promote the inclusion and full participation of people with disabilities in the communities of their choice. The Direct Support Workforce is an area of focus for ICI.

Minnesota Direct Support Workforce 2018 Final Report

This is the final report of the results of statewide surveys of direct support organizations in Minnesota conducted to better understand wages, benefits, size, and scope of the direct support workforce. The report is written by the Institute on Community Integration, Research and Training Center on Community Living, for the Minnesota Department of Human Services.

Minnesota Direct Support Worker 2018 Final Report

As a companion to the Minnesota Direct Support Workforce 2018 Final report, this report summarizes survey results from direct support workers in Minnesota on issues related to their experience, including wages, number of hours worked per week, number of jobs worked, access to benefits and utilization of public assistance, and perceptions about staff turnover. 

Moving Mountains Award

An annual, national award recognizing best practices in the direct support workforce. Administered by the National Alliance for Direct Support Professionals (NADSP), the Research and Training Center on Community Living at the University of Minnesota’s Institute on Community Integration, and the American Network of Community Options and Resources (ANCOR).

The National Alliance for Direct Support Professionals (NADSP)

A national nonprofit whose mission is to elevate the status of direct support professionals by improving practice standards, promoting system reform, and advancing their knowledge, skills and values. The NADSP has developed a national certification program for Direct Support Professionals working in community human services. The purpose of this certification program is to provide national recognition for the contributions and competence of Direct Support Professionals (DSPs) who apply for and meet the certification standards. 

The NADSP Code of Ethics

Developed by the NADSP, the Code of Ethics is intended to serve as a straightforward and relevant guide for DSPs as they resolve the ethical dilemmas they face every day, and encourages them to achieve the highest ideals of the profession.

The NADSP E-Badge Academy

The National Alliance for Direct Support Professionals (NADSP) has launched The NADSP E-Badge Academy, which offers Direct Support Professionals (DSPs) the ability to earn electronic badges as a way to demonstrate their knowledge, skills, and values on the job. These electronic badges recognize and celebrate the professional development that might otherwise go unacknowledged. With E-Badges through the online platform Web Courseworks, professionals can submit specific examples, experience, and education that highlights their achievements and contributions to human services. Human service organizations can establish administrative accounts, while users can upload testimonials of their accomplishments for review by NADSP, and then share the resulting E-Badges with others.

National Core Indicators Annual Staff Stability Report PDF

Around the country, states are looking to improve the quality and stability of the workforce of direct support professionals (DSPs) who assist adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Their efforts come at a time of escalating demand for long-term care services and supports and transition from institutional care to home and community-based settings. Importantly, states are also looking to reduce the costs associated with staff turnover at provider agencies and to reduce the impact of turnover on the quality of supports and outcomes for consumers. To develop policies and programs to support the DSP workforce, states require reliable data on turnover, wages, benefits, and recruitment/retention strategies. The NCI Staff Stability Survey is an effort to provide ongoing, dependable state-based information.

National Frontline Supervisor Competencies PDF

The National Frontline Supervisor Competencies are a nationally validated set of 11 competency areas intended to guide the work of frontline supervisors in the direct support workforce. This project was completed by the Institute on Community Integration, Research and Training Center on Community Living.

The Ohio Alliance of Direct Support Professionals

OADSP is a non-profit committed to developing a stable and highly skilled direct support workforce and to enhancing current and future direct support professionals.

Regional Centers for Workforce Transformation

The Regional Centers for Workforce Transformation are regional collaborations between service providers, Direct Support Professionals (DSPs), people who receive services and other stakeholders in the field of intellectual and developmental disabilities. They are coordinated by the New York Alliance for Inclusion & Innovation through funding provided by New York State Office for People with Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD).

Report to the President 2017: America’s Direct Support Workforce Crisis

The President’s Committee for People with Intellectual Disabilities prepared this report for President Trump as part of the committee’s mandate to serve as a "blue-ribbon panel to address the needs of people with intellectual disability and their families."

PHI

PHI works to ensure quality care for older adults and people with disabilities by creating quality jobs for direct care workers.

Self-Advocacy Online

Self-Advocacy Online is a place to find accessible information on current topics in self-advocacy. It’s operated by the Institute on Community Integration’s Research and Training Center on Community Living. 

Staff Recruitment, Retention, & Training Strategies For Community Human Services Organizations

This book provides practical strategies that managers, supervisors, and administrators can use in their agencies to assess and successfully address workforce challenges.