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March 7, 2023

Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month: Beyond the Conversation

Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month: Beyond the Conversation

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

March is National Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month (DDAM), a time when we join with our partners to educate the public about developmental disabilities and highlight the many ways people with and without disabilities come together to form strong, diverse communities.

This year’s DDAM campaign theme encourages us to go Beyond the Conversation. It asks us to celebrate the progress we have made toward community inclusion so far while also thinking bigger and bolder about “what’s next?”

As the primary agency providing services to New Yorkers with developmental disabilities, we appreciate the opportunity to move the conversation forward and into actions that not only highlight, but try to address, the barriers many people with developmental disabilities face when seeking meaningful community involvement. We are committed to working side-by-side with people with lived experience to break barriers down, whether they are barriers that have been historically and structurally embedded into the fabric of our society, or are barriers inadvertently created by our own system or others.

Our dedication to this work can be seen in our 2023-2027 strategic plan, which includes goals that prioritize inclusion, in all facets of a person’s life, regardless of race, color, national origin, language preference, sexual identity, religion, or age, and objectives that prioritize innovation, diversity, equity, and change.

It is our hope that through our strategic plan work and campaigns like #DDAM that bring greater awareness, acceptance, and respect for people with developmental disabilities, that the lives of all New Yorkers, grow richer and our diverse communities continue to get stronger.

We encourage you to join us by following, sharing, and tagging us on our social media pages, as we move #BeyondTheConversation throughout the days of March, and months and years to come.


Sincerely, Kerri E. Neifeld Commissioner

You can read more about the national DDAM campaign headed by the National Association of Councils on Developmental Disabilities here

To learn more about our 2023-2027 Strategic Plan visit our strategic plan page on our website here.