A Message From Our CEO to Honor Direct Support Professionals Recognition Week

To All of Our Direct Support Professionals – Thank you!

This week marks National Direct Support Professionals Week, an opportunity to honor and recognize the contributions of our direct support workforce. Our essential frontline direct support staff brings our mission to life. They support individuals with autism and developmental disabilities to lead the lives they choose at home, school, work, and in their communities. They facilitate connections, keep people safe and in good health while increasing each person’s independence. It is with tremendous pride this week that we celebrate our Community Services team recognizing the crucial work of Direct Support Professionals. Each day, they bring their compassion, talent, and flexibility to work – committed to putting the needs of our individuals first. Each day, they work to enhance the lives of the children, adolescents, adults, and families who seek our support. They aid in daily successes and are the bedrock of support for people in challenging times making a difference – having an impact.

THANK YOU seems hardly enough in recognizing your exceptional efforts in supporting our individuals and their families. Whether you assist individuals to learn essential life skills, prepare for the workforce, or help them become active and productive in their communities, we salute your dedication and tireless work! Regardless of the difficulties you encounter, you persist and seize every opportunity to enhance the quality of life of those you are supporting.

Over 40 years ago, I joined this fight for equity and justice by joining with individuals, their families, advocates, and provider agencies by becoming a DSP. It was one of the most satisfying and challenging roles. Today, the fight for social justice continues. It’s about access, equity, and inclusion that ensures our individuals can fully participate in society. We can only continue this movement with your unwavering support of our individuals. Furthermore, we must continue to bring attention to the complex work our DSPs and advocate for their recognition through increased funding for wages, benefits, and professional development. This is necessary to recruit and retain talented DSPs and ensure individuals and families that we’ll continue to support them.

This week, as we celebrate YOU, let’s take time to reflect on your accomplishments and consider, how can we do more? How can we be more person-centered? How can we empower individuals to raise their voices? How can we further facilitate independence and community inclusion?

I look forward to seeing many of you at our First DSP Appreciation Celebration in CS scheduled for Wednesday, September 12th it’s not too late to register. For those who cannot attend, I hope you will enjoy celebrations planned at your program.


Matt Sturiale

President & CEO