Episode 75: Supported Decision-Making: From Justice for Jenny to Justice for All!

Wednesday, December 4, 2019 - 1:00 pm EST

Jonathan Martinis, Legal Director for Quality Trust for Individuals with Disabilities and the Project Director, National Resource Center for Supported Decision-Making


Before her rights were taken away, Jenny Hatch had her own apartment, worked, spent time with friends, and went to a church of her choice. After a court ordered her into guardianship, Ms. Hatch found herself in a group home against her will with her cell phone and laptop taken away, cut off from her friends and not allowed to go to her job and church.

On this episode of ADA Live!, Jonathan Martinis discusses his new book,” Supported Decision-Making: From Justice for Jenny to Justice for All!” Martinis, along with Dr. Peter Blanck, tells Jenny’s story including how she lost her rights under guardianship and how she won them back when she showed the court that she uses Supported Decision-Making (SDM) to make her own decisions with help from people she trusts. They also show how you can use SDM in your life, with family members, or people you support, including in programs like Special Education, Vocational Rehabilitation, and Person Centered Planning.

In 2019, the National Council on Disability (NCD) reported that between 45% and 55% of people with Intellectual and/or Developmental Disability (ID/DD) are under some form of guardianship. “Supported Decision-Making: From Justice for Jenny to Justice for All!” is a practical guide for family members, human service professionals, and people in or facing guardianship.  Martinis and Blanck hope that people with disabilities and their families, friends, and professionals will use this book to help develop customized Supported Decision-Making (SDM) plans that protect the rights of the individual with a disability and empower them to make their own decisions.