Leading National Behavioral Healthcare Provider

Call 1-800-345-1292

  • Recreational Therapy Month
  • Devereux News
  • Who we help
  • Careers at Devereux
  • Inspirational messages of Hope banner

Tweet Share on LinkedIn Send email Print

Devereux empowers adults to make their voices heard through voting

 

Devereux is committed to helping ensure adults with disabilities have the opportunity to exercise their right to vote. Pictured: Devereux N.J. individual AJ voting at a polling location in 2019.

Voting is a way of making decisions and expressing views, and Devereux Advanced Behavioral Health is committed to helping ensure adults living with emotional, behavioral and cognitive differences have the opportunity to exercise their right to vote.

Each year, team members at Devereux centers across the country help those in their care learn about the election process and register to vote.

“We believe it is important for adults with disabilities to have a say in legislative decisions that may affect their lives, and in selecting candidates who best support their interests and personal beliefs,” said Devereux Vice President of Operations – Adult Services Stephen Bruce, M.Ed., BCBA. All voices need – and deserve – to be heard, and voting allows these individuals to express their opinions about the issues that matter to them.”

The importance of voting

According to a recent report by the Program for Disability Research at Rutgers University, more than 38 million people with disabilities are eligible to vote in the November 2020 election.

AJ, who receives services through Devereux New Jersey, registered to vote when he was 18 years old, and cast his first ballot in the 2009 general election. This year, due to COVID-19, AJ voted by mail. Note: New Jersey is one of nine states, plus Washington, D.C., to mail ballots to all registered voters for the general election.

“I was excited about it,” AJ said. “I prefer to vote in person, but due to the coronavirus, we have to mail our ballots in.”

AJ participates in one of Devereux New Jersey’s self-advocacy groups, which help individuals feel empowered by their hard work and proud of their accomplishments. AJ understands the importance of voting, noting “If you don’t vote, you miss out. If you do vote, you give your voice. The choice is yours – but choose. You have the choice to do the right thing and vote.” 

Learning about the election process

Recently, individuals in one of Devereux New Jersey’s self-advocacy groups participated in a 10-week voter education series.

“We used a curriculum developed by Rutgers University that included lessons on voting history; how to register; how to make informed voting choices; and voting rights, explained Devereux New Jersey Vocational Services Director Yasmin Qazilbash. “After one class, I spent some time with one of our adults, answering questions and helping him register to vote. Some of the individuals in our care never had the opportunity to vote before coming to us. We want to provide them with the tools and resources they need to make their own choices and speak up for themselves. We want to ensure they know they have the same rights as everyone else.”

Voting for the first time

Sixty-nine-year-old Alastair, who receives services through Devereux California, will be exercising his right to vote for the first time during the general election.

Alastair registered to vote before living at Devereux California’s Weisman Center. The residential care facility encourages individuals to make choices and maximize their unique potential. Alastair also is enrolled in the center’s greenhouse program, which is designed to enhance personal growth, independence and life satisfaction.

Alastair is excited to be part of the election process, and is familiar with the candidates. “I’m looking forward to voting,” he shared. “I want to see if I can do it – I’m looking forward to the whole experience.”

Learn more about Devereux Advanced Behavioral Health

 

Latest News

Recreational Therapy Month   Recreational Therapy Month: Enriching the lives of youth, adults with disabilities

February is Recreational Therapy Month. Learn how Devereux is using recreational activities and programs to help those living with emotional, behavioral and cognitive differences acquire new skills, boost their self-confidence and improve their quality of life.

Operation Santa   Community supporters make holiday season special for Devereux Pennsylvania youth

The holidays are over, but the memories remain of a special season filled with joy and gratitude for youth served by Devereux Pennsylvania. Through Devereux Pennsylvania Children’s Services’ “Operation Santa” program, community supporters, as well as center staff and their families, donated hundreds of toys to help fulfill the holiday wish lists - and more - of approximately 300 children and adolescents living with emotional, behavioral and cognitive differences.

Family smiling   Devereux article on engaging families in behavioral health treatment featured in Behavioral Health News

An article written by Devereux National Director of Behavioral Health Services Crystal Taylor-Dietz, Psy.D., and Devereux National Director of Family Engagement Amy Kelly, MBA, MNM, was recently featured in Behavioral Health News. The article - “The integral role of families in promoting mental health and managing mental illness” - discusses the importance of family engagement in behavioral health treatment.

personal experiences   Adults share personal experiences on services through Devereux New Jersey’s Advisory Board

Adults who receive services through Devereux New Jersey - who also sit on the center’s Advisory Board for individuals served - have an opportunity to make their voices heard and share their personal experiences on the services they receive.

Autism Spectrum News   Autism Spectrum News features Devereux article on supporting individuals with disabilities in becoming self-advocates

An article written by Devereux team members on supporting teens and adults with disabilities in becoming self-advocates was recently featured in Autism Spectrum News. The article includes interviews with three individuals who are enrolled in Devereux Pennsylvania’s Community Adult Autism Partnership Program as they offer tips on how to ensure your voice is heard.

Nacole   Devereux New Jersey Direct Support Professional/Lead Staff Nacole Moore

Devereux New Jersey Direct Support Professional/Lead Staff Nacole Moore leads by example and is always ready and willing to lend a helping hand. Learn how she is inspiring all those around her.

Tammy Maguire   Celebrating Devereux’s Healthcare Heroes: Spotlight on Devereux Arizona Nursing Manager Tammy Maguire

At Devereux, our employees are at the heart of everything we do - and are key to our success. Learn how Devereux Arizona Nursing Manager Tammy Maguire is serving and inspiring others every day.

Autism Spectrum News   Devereux article on advocating for those who are nonspeaking or minimally verbal featured in Autism Spectrum News

Read this Autism Spectrum News article written by Devereux National Director of Family Engagement Amy Kelly, MBA, MNM, as she offers suggestions on how to advocate for those who are nonspeaking or limited in their verbal communication.

seeds of learning   Planting seeds of learning: Devereux California’s greenhouse program helps adults grow job, life skills

Adults who participate in Devereux California’s greenhouse vocational program are gaining more than a green thumb, they are cultivating critical job and life skills to help them increase their independence and enhance their overall quality of life.


More Stories