Independent Living Principles

  1. Human Rights: Equal rights and opportunities for all; no segregation by disability type or stereotype.
  1. Consumerism: A person who is using or buying a service or product should decide what is best for him or herself.
  1. Deinstitutionalization: no person should be institutionalized (by a building, program or family).
  1. Demedicalization: People with disabilities are not ‘sick’.
  1. Self-help: Professionals are not always the source of the best or most appropriate help.
  1. Advocacy: Systemic, long term, community-wide change is needed to ensure that people with disabilities benefit from all that society has to offer.
  1. Barrier removal: Institutional, architectural, communicational and attitudinal barriers removed.
  1. Consumer control: The best qualified organizations to support individuals with disabilities are those governed, managed, staffed and operated by people with disabilities.
  1. Peer role models: Human rights leadership and living independently is role modelled by people with disabilities.
  1. Cross-disability: Work done by individuals with different types of disabilities, or multiple disabilities.