Not only did the Ethan Saylor Alliance create better training for law enforcement, it is also creating jobs for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities! Here’s a bit about how it works.
For those who are new to our blog and may not have heard about Ethan Saylor, you can find his story here. Ethan was a young man who had Down syndrome and was killed during an altercation with police over the price of a movie ticket.
Thanks to his mother, and a host of disability advocates, Maryland passed a law in hopes of preventing future deaths.
The Ethan Saylor Alliance
“The Ethan Saylor Alliance was passed in April of 2015 and was aimed at providing increased training for members of law enforcement and other public service entities on specific needs of those with developmental and intellectual disabilities. The premise of the alliance is that self-advocates take the central role in educating and informing the community in regard to the specific needs of those with disabilities.” – Maryland Department of Disabilities website
A call went out to find people who could implement the goals created by The Alliance.
The Ethan Saylor Alliance Partnership
“What are the goals of the project? As a result of the one-year project, 15 people with I/DD from around the state will become active participants, alongside law enforcement trainers, to educate both in-service and entry-level law enforcement personnel on appropriate and effective means of communicating and interacting with people with I/DD. The project partners will be responsible for recruiting, supporting, and training 15 people with I/DD in basic self-advocacy skills, as well as in the use of a curriculum designed for first responders called Understanding Core Characteristics of Developmental and Intellectual Disabilities that has been certified by the Maryland Police and Correctional Training Commissions, the entity responsible for law enforcement training standards in Maryland. Once the self-advocates have been trained, they will each co-lead at least two field-based law enforcement trainings scheduled throughout central and southern Maryland in early 2017.” – Maryland Center For Developmental Disabilities
The job listing, posted by People On The Go and The Arc Maryland, listed the following benefits:
- Travel expenses paid for by the Alliance
- Trainer compensation
- Workforce ready job skills
So, while focusing on one issue, the alliance is actually addressing an additional problem by creating new, meaningful jobs within the community.
Ethan’s legacy continues!