Our Beliefs

People with all kinds of (dis) ABILITIES have the right to be equal and respected citizens in our communities. We have the right to work, live, have fun, make friends, take risks, and learn to speak up for ourselves. People have the right to make their OWN informed choices.

Image shows person with a briefcase walking up stairs.

We believe that all people have the right to have a job that provides a living wage, opportunity for advancement, and personal fulfillment.

That is why we want jobs that:

  • compliment our abilities;
  • provide equal opportunities for competitive wages, benefits and retirement;
  • incorporate choice and change;
  • focus on career advancement;
  • and increase quality of life

Image shows a megaphone.

We believe that all people have the right to speak up and speak out for themselves.

That is why we want to speak out for ourselves and be heard in all aspects of our lives. What we say needs to be valued and respected whether we use our voices, assistive technology, sign language, or body movements.

Image shows person in wheelchair boarding a bus.

We believe that all people have the right to get where they need or want to go.

We deserve equal opportunities to utilize public transportation for work, medical needs, education, recreation, family and community activities. Transportation helps to make and keep us independent.

Image shows person considering their own choices.

We believe that all people have the right to make the decisions that affect and direct their lives.

To support us leading the process, we need equal access to information, resources, facts and supports. The significant people in our lives, such as family, guardians, case managers, co-workers, friends, bosses, and personal support staff should assist us in a self-directed process to form these decisions.

Image shows people standing together.

We believe it is our human right to be included equally in our community without limitations.

  • Inclusion means that everyone is valued, respected, and included in their communities in ways that are meaningful to them.
  • Inclusion is more than access to buildings and bathrooms and buses.
  • Real inclusion means that people with disabilities have equal access to information and support to understand and use it in their own lives. We each have an important role to play to make inclusion a priority and a reality in our community.

Image shows an x across an institutional looking building.

We believe that no person should be segregated from our communities. We believe that appropriate funding to support enhancing community services must be provided.

That is why we want institutions closed. We object to anyone controlling anyone else’s life. We will pledge our support and help to those people who move out to find friends, supports, and resources in their new homes.

“Changes I Want to See”

“Respectful Language”

2020 Legislative Agenda

People First is the oldest self-advocacy organization in the State of
Washington and prioritizes pushing for change in these key areas.

Image is an icon showing a person standing next to their home.

Everyone deserves safe and healthy living situations regardless of disability status.

Staying in hospitals or institutions is not what people with disabilities want! We want to stay in the community with DD supports in accessible and affordable housing situations. We need legislators to increase funding for SOLA’s in the I/DD community and close institutions.

Image is an icon of a hand holding out a fair wage.

We believe that all workers should be paid minimum wage or above. No person with disabilities should be denied an equal wage! We need legislators to end sub minimum wage in public and private businesses!

Rights for People Who Use DDA Services. Image is an icon showing a person on a first place podium.

The DD Ombuds office is currently working on legislation of DDA clients rights. We are in support of this legislation.

Access a document with the entire list of your rights as a client of the Developmental Disabilities Administration here:

DDA Client Rights

For videos about those same rights, click here:

Videos on DDA Client Rights

Image is an icon showing a silhouette of a person with a healthy symbol inside their head.

We want all people with disabilities to have access to mental health services in the community. We need legislators to increase funding for metal health services in the I/DD community that can be provided at home if needed.

Image is an icon showing a care provider offering a helping hand.

Caregivers are often the backbone for many people with disabilities! Quite often they are relied upon to perform many tasks for their clients.

We need legislators to expand services that care providers can perform. Care givers should be allowed to respond to person centered needs at home and in the community.

image is an icon showing a rejection of verbal abuse.

Self advocates need legislators to reform responses to abusive situations. Neglect is a form of abuse where the predator who is responsible for caring for someone, who is unable to care for themselves, fails to do so.

Financial exploitation, physical, emotional, and sexual abuse should also not be tolerated. Abuse continues to be commonplace. Proactive solutions need to be identified and implemented.

People First of Washington
16815 Pacific Avenue South
P.O. Box 1180
Spanaway, WA 98387-9997


People First of Washington logo. Click to go to the home page.

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