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Happy Day Service Providers Week!

D6C4BFEC-9050-43A8-8E8E-D74C02735901In my daughters’ Day Service Program, this is DSP Appreciation Week. A DSP is a Day Service Provider, akin to a paraprofessional at school. They are the 1:1 staff who are with our adult children at their programs. Those who have a program. Their work is hard. Their pay is low.  Here in expensive Fairfield County Connecticut, the rate is $17.53 an hour.  Hiring is extremely difficult. as you can imagine. Many programs are turning down the severely behavioral individuals because they are A) difficult to staff and B) not profitable. They are autistic. Once a student ages out of school at age 22, there is NO LEGAL MANDATE to provide any services or supports.  No IDEA. No FAPE.  I'm bringing breakfast for the staff on Thursday. I wish I could do more. I need every one of them. Today, tomorrow and long after I'm gone.

Below is my comment on Facebook in response to the post by their post.  I hope I made my point to “everyone” who reads it. Looks up at corner office…


Racing to the kitchen to start baking treats! I wish I could hide $100 in every cupcake - a good DSP is worth his or her weight in gold. We send our adult children with hope and a prayer they will be meaningfully and age appropriately engaged, cared for with tender hands, provided opportunities for growth and laughter and most of all, respected as adults. Day program is NOT residential, it’s not babysitting. I like to say the program is my daughters' JOB. It requires planning, structure, routine, and engaging days. WE KNOW how difficult it can be to work with our family members. Often frustrating. Painful even. Most of us bear the battle scars to show for our love. The DSP offers Mom a brief respite so we can WORK, have a cup of coffee in an open mug (LOL) and...function. DSPs deserve a higher pay rate than the state and agencies provide. I'll take fewer VPs and more DSPs to run a smooth program. For now, I can send cupcakes. XOX



Amazingly stated!

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