Missouri Developmental Disabilities Council Sexuality Education

Grantee:  Paraquad

Project Background

In 2018, the Information and Technical Assistance Center for Councils on Developmental Disabilities (ITACC) and, the National Association of Councils on Developmental Disabilities (NACDD) published a special report. The report focused on statistical information pertaining to the sexual abuse and exploitation rates for people with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (I/DD).

The report sites risk factors including the following:

●        Lack of education about sexual development and anatomy

●        Lack of information on abuse awareness

●        Lack of healthy relationship education

●        Lack of age appropriate friends

Depending on the study, research shows people with disabilities are anywhere from 4-10 times more likely to experience sexual abuse in their lifetime. According to a recent National Public Radio (NPR) 2017 show, an estimated 72% of rapes are committed by someone a victim knows, but for women with disabilities, that percent is even higher For victims with disabilities, their rapist is known to them 86% of the time.

MODDC has invested substantial resources in addressing many of the issues that intersect with sexuality education, most notably through the work of the Victimization Task Force. While the task force has made significant progress impacting systems change once an individual has reported abuse, the preventative and educational measures leading up to that point have not been addressed by the Council. Lack of education and awareness in human sexuality remains a system of oppression that is preventing self-advocates from living full lives. Providing a comprehensive sexuality education model that is sustainable will result in systems change that will serve to dismantle this system of oppression faced by the I/DD community.

Project Description

This three-year project will provide comprehensive sexuality education to self-advocates and advocates. The grantee for this project will engage with a nationally recognized curriculum to both provide trainings, and train self-advocates and advocates as trainers on this topic.

For Questions About the Course

Contact Stephanie McDowell, Youth & Family Supervisor at smcdowell@paraquad.org or 314-289-4265.

Project Lead

Briana Conley