We Believe ---

“People First of Ohio values all employees with disabilities and supports Ohio’s Employment First Initiative. Therefore, People First calls for the elimination of all subminimum wages and of 14(c) certificates which allow employers to legally pay less than minimum wage.”

Our Vision:
Respect – Equality – Advocacy – Empowerment!

Our Mission:
Ohioans with Developmental Disabilities –
advocating, uniting, educating & empowering



About People First 


We believe that all people with disabilities should be treated as equal and be able to speak up for what they 

want by serving as leaders and working together as a team with all members of the community.


People First of Ohio assists people with disabilities who are self-advocates to talk about their needs and rights with 

people in their communities. Self-advocates make sure that people with disabilities have the right to do what they 

want in their lives, are responsible for their own choices, and the right to live and do things in the community 

like other citizens.



People First began in Ohio in 1998 by a group of self-advocates who wanted to
improve their abilities to represent themselves and to train others to be
self-advocates. People First of Ohio has members from teens through adults.

Local Chapters

People First of Ohio helps to set up local chapters of people with disabilities who
are self-advocates. The chapters focus on helping others with disabilities become
self-advocates. Local Chapters work mostly on local issues and report to the state
what they would like to see happen on a state/federal level.

Statewide Advocacy

People First of Ohio is a statewide organization that works with state legislators with other advocacy groups and state agencies. These relationships promote better interaction among people who make decisions in the communities and the state. People First believes that if policymakers begin to really know people with disabilities, they will be able to make positive changes with them.

Organizational Leadership 

Leaders of People First of Ohio are themselves people with disabilities.
Board members must belong to a People First Chapter in Ohio and are
elected to represent their region at the state level.