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Calls to Action

New apartment complex in Pittsburgh mixes residents with autism and those without

July 14, 2015

The Dave Wright Apartments in Heidelberg, Pa. will house adults with autism alongside residents without autism. The developers will be using NHS Human Services of Lafayette Hill, Pa., to help the residents with autism find work, provide such services as bookkeeping or shopping assistance, and help set up a tenants’ board. The apartments are expected to open in the fall of 2016.

The apartments are financed under a federal law that provides affordable housing and is part of a recent movement to create affordable housing projects that put various special needs groups alongside typical renters. 

Integrating young adults and adults with autism into the community plays a central role in the lives of these individuals. Community integration can help people with autism lead happier, more independent and more fulfilling lives.

"Research has shown that when adults with autism live, work and play alongside their non-disabled peers in the community, they achieve better outcomes," said Angela Lello, Autism Speaks director of Housing and Community Living. "Current best practices in residential services support adults with autism in the naturally occurring environment to the greatest extent possible."

The Autism Speaks Housing and Community Living initiative works to increase access to home and community based services (HCBS), and increase the capacity of HCBS providers to serve adults with autism and increase available housing options. Read more about this important initiative here. Find additional housing resources from Autism Speaks here.