Leadership and Community Support

Partners in Policymaking

A Self-Advocacy Leadership Training Program

“Building partnerships to make a difference in the lives of people with disabilities”

What is Partners in Policymaking?

The goal of Partners in Policymaking is to foster collaboration among people with disabilities, family members of children with disabilities, and policy makers at national, state and local levels. Partners in Policymaking trainings teach people to be leaders in shaping policy for people with disabilities and their families. Graduates of past Partners in Policymaking trainings in Connecticut have become involved in key policy and advocacy roles in the state. The graduates of CT Partners in Policymaking often become members of boards, councils, task forces, and advisory committees. They are recognized as skilled and capable leaders in disability issues in their communities and in the state.

Who Should Apply?

  • Family members of individuals with disabilities
  • Individuals with disabilities

Thirty participants will be chosen. Participants should be able to actively participate in training and discussion. Prior to completion of the program, participants will be required to complete an independent advocacy project. Participants should have an email address, access to a computer, and reliable internet service.

About the Training

The Connecticut Partners in Policymaking training consists of seven weekend training sessions with nationally recognized speakers and state experts in disability issues. All training is provided at no cost to participants.

  • The project will provide lunch and dinner on Friday and breakfast and lunch on Saturday
  • All hotel costs including overnight accommodations and meals will be paid by Connecticut Partners in Policymaking
  • Reasonable accessibility accommodations, including transportation, will be provided on an individual basis


  • History of the Developmental Disabilities Movement: Lessons learned and the way forward
  • State Laws and Policies and Those Who Create Them
  • Federal Laws and Policies and Those Who Create Them
  • Inclusive Education and Lifelong Learning
  • Employment
  • Housing and Transportation
  • Positive Behavioral Supports
  • Assistive Technology
  • Independent Living
  • Supporting Families
  • Community Organizing

Training Requirements

  • Arrive on time
  • Attend all sessions
  • Complete all homework assignments for each session
  • Complete an advocacy project prior to graduation
  • COVID-19 Precautions: Proof of vaccination or appropriate documentation of a disability related waiver will be required. All participants will also be required to wear a mask.

Participating Partners

UCONN UCEDD small logo, transparent blue
CT Council on Developmental Disabilities logo
Disability Rights CT logo
CT State Independent Living Council logo