Active Citizenship & Disability, November 4th, 2011

The CENTRE FOR DISABILITY LAW AND POLICY, NUI Galway will host a one-day conference entitled ‘Active Citizenship & Disability: Toward a 21st Century Model of Supports for Persons with Disabilities’. It will be held in the Clayton Hotel in Galway City on Friday, 4 November commencing at 9am sharp. It will bring together key international thinkers and actors who have transformed disability policy and service provision.

The purpose of this conference is to provide a forum in which participants can reflect on the sharp break needed between traditional welfare-oriented supports for persons with disabilities and a newer model that aims to underpin independence, choice and active citizenship. It will provide a meeting point between theorists who bring important perspectives from the new UN disability convention, policy makers interested in redesigning service delivery models, service providers interested in re-imagining their services in the decades to come, and persons with disabilities anxious to ensure that future services are adequate to ensure their right to live independent lives and be included in the community

Since the Health Service Executive report on deinstitutionalisation entitled 'A Time To Move On' in July this year, Ireland has been on the cusp of a major reform agenda of its antiquated and outmoded institutions for persons with disabilities. The Centre for Disability Law and Policy at NUI Galway is dedicated to inform and lead that change.

Conference speakers include Martin Routledge, Director of Operations at In Control and who has been a key figure in the reform of adult social care services at the Department of Health in the UK, and Brian Salisbury, Strategic Director at Community Living British Columbia, who has driven service reform and individual funding in British Columbia. In addition, Patricia Fratangelo from New York, a world-renowned expert in service transformation, will speak about her experiences in grappling with change. Each of these international speakers are also giving more time to discuss the finer details of reform at a workshop event hosted by the Federation of Voluntary Bodies on Thursday, 3 November.

The conference is aimed at people with disabilities and their families, service providers, NGO’s and those involved in disability issues, the HSE and policy makers. It is also aimed at those interested in disability service provision generally as well as individual funding mechanisms specifically.

For further information, including the conference programme, registration and a list of speakers, see For other enquiries contact Roísín Fitzpatrick at 091 494020 or