Community Matters: Comprehensive Disability Awareness Training

LITTLE ROCK, AR - First responders in the Natural State are now set to receive some comprehensive training that will allow them to improve service for people with special needs.

Arkansas just became the second state in the nation to implement this new program. 

It came about after the Arkansas Governor's Developmental Disabilities Council found that families of disabled individuals wanted the improvements.

According to the Disabilities Council, emergency personnel respond to more cases involving a disabled person. A 60-thousand dollar federal grant will fund the training to all first responders in Arkansas.

Training will educate officers, firefighters and other emergency personnel on how to communicate and respond to those with disabilities during emergency situations.

"Not just the families that have been affected by maybe tragic results, but we want to help them get the training that they need to help them to where they are not placed in a situation like that," says Teresa Sander.

Sander also stresses the importance this resource is to our volunteer first responders across the state who don't necessarily get training opportunities like this one.

Before the end of the year all Arkansas first responders will get this disability awareness training. Right now the program is being customized for state laws and policies.

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