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Citizenship: A Guide for Providers of Support

Authors: Sam Sly and Bob Tindall

Keys to Citizenship was the nationally acclaimed concept conceived by Simon Duffy and published as a guide to getting good support for people with learning disabilities in 2003. The principles were taken on by many working alongside people with learning disabilities and increasingly other groups of people have found that its principles apply equally to everyone. It was a book that helped people to improve people’s lives. It was at the forefront of developing true citizenship for all. 

In 2014 Simon Duffy and Wendy Perez published a revised and accessible version of Keys to Citizenship called Citizenship for All. Importantly the new model for Keys added a seventh key - Love.

The 7 Keys to Citizenship are:

  1. Purpose – having goals, hopes and dreams and a structure for life and a plan to achieve this - having our own direction.
  2. Freedom – having control and the ability to speak up and be heard and to be legally visible in society - taking charge of our own life.
  3. Money – having enough money to live a good life and control over how that money is spent.
  4. Home – having a place that belongs to us where we have control over everything that happens there and feel safe - a base for a good life. 
  5. Help – having good help that enhances our gifts, talents and skills and supports our standing, freedom, rights and responsibilities.
  6. Life – making an active contribution to our communities - sharing our gifts - making a difference - learning with others - taking risks and having fun.
  7. Love – having loving relationships - finding friendships - enjoying life, love and sex - being part of a family - respecting ourselves and the rights of others.

Sadly, more than ten years on, too many people with disabilities are still being abused, and are still not getting the chance to be full citizens enjoying great lives. We strongly believe this is not acceptable. So in 2014 Simon Duffy, Wendy Perez, members of Cornwall People First, Gary Kent from New Key and Sam Sly came together to start thinking about how Keys to Citizenship could once again be pivotal to improving people’s lives and gaining full citizenship. 

If like us you want to make a difference to the lives of the people you support then this guide, written by Sam Sly and Bob Tindall, will help you make those changes.

Read the pdf in your browser here.


The publisher is the Centre for Welfare Reform.

Citizenship - a guide for providers of support © Sam Sly and Bob Tindall 2016.

All Rights Reserved. No part of this paper may be reproduced in any form without permission from the publisher except for the quotation of brief passages in reviews.

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