Catherine Read discusses the needs of Intellectually and Developmentally Disabled Virginians with Lucy Beadnell, Director of Advocacy for the Arc of Northern Virginia. The topics range from Medicaid Wavers to education, job training and employment opportunities, the Department of Justice Settlement with Virginia, and the school to prison pipeline which disproportionately over represents those in the IDD community.
More and more young people are being diagnosed with Autism (1 in 68 students in Northern Virginia) and they are leaving public education programs with skills and expectations but few opportunities for employment. There a many different agencies and organizations grappling with the best ways to serve this growing community of young adults. A greater awareness by the general public, as well as greater engagement with the business community, are key to integrating people in this community into our broader communities.