Developmental Disabilities Council (DDC) Logo

Working to ensure that people with developmental disabilities enjoy the same quality of life as the rest of society.


What is a Developmental Disability?

Developmental disabilities are chronic disabilities that are attributable to mental or physical impairments apparent before the age of 22. These disabilities tend to be life-long and result in substantial functional limitations in major life activities such as self-care, receptive and expressive language, learning, mobility, self-direction, capacity for independent living and economic self-sufficiency.

However, this definition does not begin to define the abilities and lives of people with disabilities. People with disabilities are also mothers, fathers, brothers and sisters. They laugh and cry, go to school, hold jobs, pay taxes, play sports, get married and have children. People with developmental disabilities are poets and playwrights, business leaders and professionals, athletes and advocates. They, like everyone else, are complex individuals with hopes, dreams and special challenges

The Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Act of 2000.

Upcoming Meetings

2017 DDC Meeting Schedule: (pdf)

Upcoming Events/Requests for Proposals

Partners in Policymaking Class of 2018
Now accepting applications for the 2018 Partners in Policymaking class.

Life Conference 2018
Have a disability? Know someone who does? If you answered yes, then the LIFE Conference is a can't- miss event for you! One event, tons of information about disability-related topics. Please join us on Wednesday, January 24, 2018 at Dover Downs Hotel and Conference Center from 8:00 am-3:45 pm. To learn more or to register please navigate to or to see what people had to say about last year's conference search #lifeconference2017. To stay up-to-date on what is going to be happening at the 2018 life conference search #lifeconference2018.

Hot Topics

Voters with Disabilities Election Report
The Self Advocates Becoming Empowered network has shared the 2016 Voting Experience of Voters with Disabilities report that was recently released. This purpose of this project was to investigate issues around voting for people with I/DD; increase the number of voters, and to provide technical assistance to improve their voting experiences. In addition, the project supported the efforts of the Protection and Advocacy (P&A) organizations across the country to build partnerships with Self Advocacy organization to educate people with I/DD about their voting rights. To view the report, please Click Here


Self-Advocacy Mentor Final Report
The Developmental Disabilities Council contracted with Wolfe Consulting to provide mentoring support to the Delaware Chapter of People First, a self-advocacy group that is led by individuals with developmental and intellectual disabilities. This grant was developed because this group hit a few barriers moving forward with their organization. To view a copy of the final report for this project, please Click Here


Independent Resources, Inc. Final 3 Years Report
The Developmental Disabilities Council funded a project for the Independent Resources, Inc. Launch Space Program to address the disparity between the employment rate of persons with disabilities and without Disabilities in Delaware. In order to meet the needs of people with disabilities who choose to explore self-employment, the DD Council has provided this three-year grant to develop this program. For a link to the final report for this project, please Click Here.

NACDD celebrates the 27th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)

NACDD Statement

Developmental Disability Act & Network
Background: The Developmental Disabilities Act (DD Act) was established by Congress and was written by people with disabilities and their families. The Act created three programs, known as the DD Network. Each state and U.S. territory has a DD Network, per the Act. Each of the three programs within a state's DD Network directly addresses a need stated by the Act's authors- people with disabilities and their families.
Concern: The proposed federal budget, if passed by Congress as it is currently written, would eliminate ALL DD Councils in every U.S. state and territory. The negative impact of the loss of every DD Council nationwide on people with disabilities and their families would be unimaginable. If the DDC has had a positive impact on you, your family or your community, please consider reaching out to your representatives in Congress to advocate for all of the nation's DD Councils to continue to serve under the DD Act.

What Delaware Medicaid Cuts mean for Delawareans with Disabilities

  • Assistance with personal care such as eating, bathing and taking medicine
  • Crucial community residential options that prevent homelessness or institutionalization
  • Crisis intervention and behavioral support
  • Caregiver respite services
  • Needed home modifications such as ramps, lifts and shower access

Talk to your legislator today! Ensure our community doesn't lose the supports they so desperately need.