Office for People With Developmental Disabilities

Print: Print this page

Acting Commissioner Delaney Recognizes 2018 Direct Support Professionals of the Year


Dear Friends and Colleagues,

No one does more than direct support professionals (DSPs) to ensure that the Office for People With Developmental Disabilities carries out its mission of helping people live richer lives in their communities.  DSPs are on the front lines working directly with people of all ability levels to ensure they have the supports they need to live, work and enjoy life as independently as possible.

 Our direct support workforce is 14,000 strong statewide – with thousands more working with our not-for-profit agency partners. Throughout this week, September 9-15, 2018, we have celebrated Direct Support Professional Week in honor of our DSPs who not only provide needed services and supports, but give of themselves in an effort to make life better for the people we serve.

 I am always humbled when I hear stories about staff going above and beyond – such as visiting an individual on their own time when a person is in the hospital. Time after time I have heard the relationship between the people we support and staff described as “family.” I recently heard about a DSP who invited the people she supports to her wedding. She took time out of her special day to introduce the people she supports to her friends and family, and made sure they were enjoying themselves.

 DSPs are the backbone of our service delivery system, and their dedication and commitment to the people they support goes beyond any commitment to a job, it’s a lifelong commitment.

 I would like to congratulate OPWDD’s 2018 DSPs of the Year and to extend my deepest appreciation to the DSPs all across New York State who are helping people with developmental disabilities lead the lives they want to live in their communities.



Kerry A. Delaney
Acting Commissioner