The overarching philosophy of Full Access is a respect for the right of every person with developmental disabilities to exercise control in pursuing, developing, achieving, and maintaining a quality of life consistent with their preferences and choices. Our philosophy in supporting people with developmental disabilities is that when a person and members of their natural support network (i.e., family, friends, neighbors, etc.) decide that the person needs and wants professional support, that support should be melded with natural support. These supports should be provided in a respectful manner that ensures the person controls and chooses:

  1. how support needs are identified and budgeted,
  2. how support services are purchased and delivered,
  3. how outcomes associated with support are defined and determined, and
  4. how and when support services are reviewed and revised based on changes in the person's support needs and preferences.


Consistent with this philosophy, we value--above all else--the empowerment of the person with developmental disabilities (with help, as appropriate, from members of their natural support network) to control their own life and, accordingly, to make choices that exemplify that control. Beyond this, and consistent with an individual's personal preferences and choices, we value the right of people with developmental disabilities to have an active presence and participation in community life including, but not limited to:

  • meaningful work
  • volunteer experiences
  • spirituality
  • social relationships
  • political participation
  • educational and self-development opportunities and
  • recreational experiences.


All of our work at Full Access is founded upon the five principles of self-determination:

  • freedom
  • authority (or control)
  • support 
  • responsibility and
  • confirmation

"Self-Determination is a fundamental human right. It means that people have the freedom to decide how they want to live their lives and receive the support they need. It means having control over their resources and taking responsibility for their decisions and actions. Very simply, it means getting a life." - Ellen Cummings Operating Principles of Self-Determination