SLS is an acronym for “Supported Living Services”. Individuals living in SLS generally live by themselves (or with a roommate) in their own homes or apartments where they hold their own lease. In SLS an individual will never have more than two roommates. In this style of living, support staff go to the person’s home to work with them on life skills and help them to live independently. Support hours range anywhere from 20 hours per month to 24/7, depending on the individual’s needs. Group homes or ARF’s (adult residential facilities), on the other hand, are licensed homes generally owned by the provider where 4 to 6 people live in the home together.
All PCS support staff are required to a pass a drug test and comprehensive background check which is cleared through the Department of Justice, FBI, and the Abuse Index. We look for people who have experience working with people with developmental disabilities. All employees must speak English and be US citizens.
PCS will transport the individuals we serve, depending on a few factors. All individuals who live in one of our licensed residential programs will receive transportation in our company vans. Individuals living in SLS or ILS will receive training to familiarize them with transportation services available to them by the local community and/or regional center. Support staff who have gone through the proper protocol with Human Resources to become approved drivers are available to use their own cars to transport individuals when necessary. This is only used as a last resort when other transportation methods are not available.
Any individual with a developmental disability is eligible for PCS services. If the individual is a client of the Regional Center, funding is available through them. If the individual is not a client of the Regional Center, private pay options are available. If you or your loved one is not a client of your local Regional Center and think that you may be eligible for services, please contact your local regional center. There are 21 regional centers in California, to find the one nearest you go to http://www.dds.ca.gov/RC/RCList.cfm.
We believe that quality service is something that is delivered everyday by everyone at PCS. We try hard to influence a culture of quality at all levels. However, we do appreciate the need for traditional hierarchical supervision. Our infrastructure is designed to maximize the managerial oversight of our programs. Unannounced visits are regularly conducted by regional and program managers.
PCS is unique in that we have had tremendous success with “difficult to serve” individuals. We have successfully moved over 20 people into the community from Developmental Centers. Additionally PCS has successfully served people who, when they came to us, were in jeopardy of moving into a Developmental Center. These individuals are often referred to as “deflections” because they were deflected or prevented from having to go to a Developmental Center.
Depending on the area housing in SLS can be challenging. We encourage all people thinking of moving into their own home at some point to apply for Section 8 housing assistance. Many waiting lists can be 2 to 7 years long so it is recommended that people apply when they turn 18.
PCS focuses on connecting supported individuals with activities throughout the community. Being part of a community and a neighborhood is important to people, so accessing community functions, interest groups, and clubs is a great way to promote inclusion while also educating the community about people with disabilities. We also coordinate several inter agency activities to support socialization, learning and friendships. Such activities include barbecues, dances, karaoke nights, holiday parties, skills workshops, and sporting events.
Some individuals who choose supported living services decide they would like to live with a housemate for social and financial reasons. PCS supports the choice for people to have shared housing and provides a person-centered approach to finding suitable companions.