The Right to Shop Independently

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A woman with developmental disabilities called us requesting assistance. She lives independently in her own apartment where she prepares her own meals and manages her own medications.

She was distressed that staff at her community centered board (CCB) wanted to supervise her grocery store visits. She has diabetes and some weight issues, and her physician suggested she consult with a dietician, which she told us she enjoyed and found very helpful.

The physician, however, did not order any restrictions. In fact, the CCB restriction was not in her service plan. The CCB restricted her right to shop independently without going through the Human Rights Committee (HRC), a third party neutral process designed to safeguard the legal rights of persons receiving services.

Liz Fuselier, coordinator of Disability Law Colorado’s program for people with developmental disabilities, spoke with the director of the service provider and sent a letter explaining our client’s position as well as the CCB’s failure to follow the HRC process for restrictions.

Within five days, the restriction was lifted and our client now shops independently.