Self Directed Services

Self Direction is New York State’s current self-determination program. Self-direction empowers people to design supports based on their unique strengths and needs so they can live the life they want. Individuals and families work together with a team to customize services such as Community Habilitation, Respite and more. There are many benefits to choosing to self-direct services, including:

  • It gives more opportunity to make decisions and have control over funding used to buy services.
  • Individuals and families choose their own staff, some or all of their services, and organizations that provide them.
  • It provides more flexible services to meet the needs of the person receiving services.

Eligibility: Individuals interested in Self-directing their services

  • Reside in Cortland, Chemung, Steuben, Schuyler, Tioga or Tompkins counties
  • Have OPWDD approval for services,
  • Have HCBS Waiver Services Authorization
  • Be approved for Self-Directed Services through OPWDD


How to access: Individuals may be referred for services through their Service Access Coordinator or your Care Coordinator.


Community Habilitation, Respite, & Self-Direction Update – March 17th, 2020

At this time, Racker staff continue to provide Community Habilitation, Respite, and Self-Directed Services. Staff are asked to conduct verbal COVID-19 related screenings before meeting with any service recipient or family member face to face. Service locations should be limited to the person’s home, neighborhood (such as a park) or other well ventilated areas.  Staff should avoid taking people to places where there are groups of more than 10 people congregated together. Travel into the community should be restricted to trips that are essential to the person’s well-being such as grocery shopping or medical appointments. ​

Staff who are sick with a respiratory infection and have a fever, should stay home from work.  Staff should practice good hand hygiene to help reduce the spread of respiratory illness. Hand hygiene includes traditional hand washing (with soap and warm water, lathering for a minimum of 20 seconds) or the use of alcohol-based hand sanitizers (60% alcohol or greater) when soap and water are not available, and hands are not visibly dirty.  It is important that staff cover their mouths or noses with a tissue when coughing or sneezing and dispose of the tissue appropriately. Handwashing should occur after using a tissue.  If no tissue is available, using the inside of the elbow (or shirtsleeve) to cover the mouth or nose is preferable to using the hands. Always perform hand hygiene after sneezing, coughing and handling dirty tissues or other soiled material.   Proper handwashing should occur upon arrival to work, before and after meals, after using the bathroom, and at other times, as described above.

All services are voluntary. Families may choose to temporarily suspend services to reduce the risk of spreading illnesses.  Any staff whose hours are reduced involuntarily (Individuals and families cancel services) and wish to continue to work should contact their supervisor immediately for an alternate assignment.


Gayle A. Pado

Director of Family Resource Programs

cell:  607.240.6963