Learn About PDD - Alberta Human Services - Government of Alberta

Learn About PDD

What is PDD

PDD stands for Persons with Developmental Disabilities. PDD is part of the Seniors and Community Supports Department of the Alberta government.

What does PDD do?

PDD gets money from the Alberta government to make sure adults with developmental disabilities (like you) get the supports you need. PDD wants you to have good lives, just like other people in Alberta. PDD pays agencies and staff to give you supports.

These supports will help you in many ways.

  • They may help you find and keep a job.
  • They may help you find things to do in your community.
  • They may help you make friends.
  • They may help you live on your own or with other people.
  • They may help you feel better when you are sad, scared or upset.
  • They may help you have time away from your family, if you live with them.
  • They may help you speak up for yourself.

PDD checks up on your services to see that they are good.

PDD tells other parts of the Alberta government about what you need.

What does PDD NOT do?

Here is what PDD does NOT do:

  • PDD does NOT give you AISH.
  • PDD does NOT give you money to live on.
  • PDD does NOT pay for transportation.
  • PDD does NOT pay for health care or things like wheelchairs or meds.
  • PDD does NOT pay for clothes, food or rent.

Who do people call at PDD about services?

PDD has staff who will help you. Their jobs have different names in each region. In the Calgary Region, the PDD staff that will help you are called Client Services Coordinators.

This is who to call:

  • if you need PDD services
  • or if you need different PDD services
  • or if you have a problem with your PDD services

Who can get PDD services?

The government of Alberta must know you are a person with a developmental disability before it will pay for your services. This is how it can tell that you have a developmental disability:

  1. You find it hard to learn things and work things out.
  2. This makes it hard for you to do at least two of these things:
  • Communicate (tell people what you need and understand what they say)
  • Take care of yourself
  • Look after your home
  • Make friends and get along with others
  • Do things in your community
  • Plan what you want to do
  • Keep yourself healthy and safe
  • Read, write and do math
  • Have a job
  • Have activities you like to do
  1. You have had these problems since before you were an adult.
The government does not use the label of developmental disability to put people down or make them feel bad. It uses the label to make sure that people get help that is OK for them. PDD will want to know if your school, your doctor or another expert has tested you and says you have a developmental disability. If so, PDD will agree. Then PDD staff will talk to you and your family about what you need help with.

Older people or people from outside Alberta may not have school records or other papers that say they have a developmental disability. Then PDD has to find other ways to tell if you can get services.

What happens if PDD says it CAN give you services?

PDD staff will tell you about how to get services.

There are two ways.

  1. You can get services from an agency (a service provider) that PDD pays. This uses service or contract funding.
  2. You and your family can hire your own staff. This uses I.F. or direct funding.

PDD will say how many hours of service it will pay for.

If you want services from an agency, you can pick which one. You can pick the services you want.

What if PDD will NOT give you the services you want?

If you do not agree with what PDD has said about your services, there are steps you can take.

  1. Ask to talk to the staff's boss (called the supervisor) or the CEO.
  2. If you are not happy with what they say, ask the special PDD committee in your region to look at the problem.
  3. If you are not happy with what that committee says or you want to skip step 2, you can ask for a provincial appeal panel. Calgary PDD can tell you how to do this. Tell them about the problem as soon as you can. If you wait more than one month after you hear from the region committee, it may be too late.

That is as far as you can go with a problem. What the appeal panel says is final.

How does PDD find out if your services are good?

PDD checks to see that the services are good.

  • PDD gets reports from agencies each month that say how much help service providers gave.
  • PDD may see your service plans and service review reports each year. Your PDD staff may come to your service review meeting.
  • Every three years, your service provider has a CET review. CET stands for “Creating Excellence Together.” People come in from outside and check to see if they get good help. Service providers must do well on this review or PDD will not give them money.
  • You or your family can call your staff at PDD if you are not happy with your service provider or the help you get. You can ask PDD to help you sort out the problems. Or you can ask PDD to help you find a different service provider. If you do not know who your PDD staff is, call the PDD office and ask. They will tell you and help you set up a meeting.
Map of Alberta, showing the 6 PDD regions

How does PDD work in Alberta?

PDD is only in Alberta. Other parts of Canada have different programs.
PDD has made 6 regions in Alberta:
  • Northwest
  • Northeast
  • Edmonton
  • Central
  • Calgary
  • South
On the right is a map of Alberta with the 6 PDD regions. Which region do you live in?

PDD gives supports to over 9,300 adults.
In Calgary region, 2,600 people get services.
What does Calgary PDD do?
In the Calgary region, the Chairperson is Jeff Nish.
The job of the Calgary region PDD Board is to:
  • work with people who have developmental disabilities, their families and service providers to find out what services and supports adults in their region want and need,
  • make plans for people to get those services and supports,
  • spend the money that they get from the Alberta government so that people in their region get support that helps them have good lives, and
  • help communities to respect and include people with developmental disabilities.
The CEO for Calgary PDD is Dr. Alex Hillyard. He works with the staff and the community to set directions and get things done.
If you call your PDD office, you may not always be able to speak to the same person. Sometimes staff move to other jobs. But someone will take your call.
What do PDD staff do?

PDD staff do lots of work:
  • They give out information to people who ask for it.
  • They work with people who want to get services, and agencies that give services.
  • They keep track of the money they give to agencies and families for services.
  • They also speak up with other groups about what people with developmental disabilities need to have good lives.

Can people with developmental disabilities get jobs at PDD?

It is possible, but it may be hard. Most PDD staff have a university education. Many have worked in agencies for people with disabilities, or at other jobs in the government.
Where does PDD get its money?
PDD money comes from the government, which gets it from taxes paid by Albertans.
How does PDD spend its money?
Some money goes to the PDD regions to pay for staff there, projects and special events.
But most of the money goes to agencies and staff so they can give services to people with developmental disabilities.
Does PDD support self-advocacy?

Yes. All the regions think it is very important. They help in many ways.

  • PDD may support self-advocates to put papers into plain language.
  • PDD sometimes supports self-advocates to have meetings to share ideas.
  • PDD sometimes supports self-advocates to go to conferences to learn new things.
  • PDD sometimes supports self-advocates to talk to city councils and MLAs about what people with disabilities need.
  • PDD sometimes supports self-advocates to do projects that make life better for people with disabilities.
  • PDD invites self-advocates to meet with PDD Boards and say what they think.
  • PDD sometimes supports people with disabilities to learn more about self-advocacy.
  • PDD sometimes helps self-advocates form self-advocacy groups, or make groups stronger.
  • PDD sometimes helps self-advocacy groups have their own web site.

How do people find out more about PDD?
You can visit, phone, or write to a PDD office that is close to you. The Calgary PDD office is at:
600, 1520 4 St SW
Calgary, AB T2R 1H5
and the phone number is (403) 297-5011.
Say what you want to know. Someone will talk to you on the phone, or send you information in the mail. Ask if they have information in plain language.
You can ask for a PDD staff person to come to your self-advocacy group to talk about PDD.
Each PDD region has some information in plain language on its web site. Some also have a picture you can click on to get the computer to read the words out loud.
Modified: 2012-10-23
PID: 15242