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Building Strong Foundations: Listening to and Learning from People with Intellectual Disabilities and Their Families

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posted on 2024-01-03, 04:46 authored by Aaron JacksonAaron Jackson, Christine BigbyChristine Bigby

This chapter explores the importance of amplifying the voices and perspectives of people with intellectual disabilities in disability policy, research and service provision. It highlights what support workers and organisations might learn from actively listening to individuals with intellectual disabilities and their families. The chapter emphasises the critical role that family members play in the lives of some service users, particularly those with severe or profound intellectual disabilities. Drawing on both published literature and unpublished data from a longitudinal study of group homes, the chapter identifies key themes and recommendations for enhancing the quality of support provided in group homes and other forms of supported accommodation services. These include prioritising effective communication, promoting a culture of accountability and teamwork, maintaining strong family relationships and fostering community engagement and social connections. By implementing these strategies, service providers can better meet the diverse support needs of people with intellectual disabilities while honouring their voices and individuality.


Publication Date


Book Title

Disability Practice: Safeguarding Quality Service Delivery


Bigby C Hough A


Palgrave Macmillan

Place of publication



20p. (p. 39-58)



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© The Author(s) 2024. This chapter is licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this chapter are included in the chapter’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the chapter’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder.

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