Momentum in public policy.

Driving meaningful change through thoughtful, sustainable policy.

The path to a better world.

How do we make the world more equitable for people with autism and/or intellectual/developmental disabilities (A/I/DD)? What changes are needed in housing, healthcare, employment practices, independent living supports and education? The Daniel Jordan Fiddle Foundation Center for Public Policy at the Global Leadership Institute is pursuing innovative, viable answers to these critical questions.

“If we are going to create a future filled with potential for autistic adults and those with intellectual/developmental disabilities, we need a dramatic shift in public policy. First Place AZ is working to drive that change.”
Maureen Casey, Chief Impact Officer, First Place Global Leadership Institute

Focus Areas



Collaboration with Medicaid-managed care organizations has enabled First Place to access Medicaid to cover a portion of the cost of the Learn4Independence® curriculum for Transition Academy participants.



Through our work with the Arizona Commerce Authority and the Department of Economic Security, we are identifying which policy levers to adjust to reduce the number of underemployed or unemployed individuals with A/I/DD.


Independent living supports

By applying research from the Arizona Independence Initiative, we are identifying opportunities to increase access to affordable housing and supportive amenities for individuals with A/I/DD.



With each Housing Market Analysis, we are providing localized recommendations, including proposed policies to increase opportunities for homeownership, as well as the development of neuro-inclusive housing that is accessible and affordable.



With Arizona State University, Creighton University, University of Arizona, Dignity Health and NARBHA Institute, we are working on ways to increase the number of healthcare professionals trained to meet the needs of adults with A/I/DD. This includes exploring administrative approaches, funding, and pre- and post-doctoral training.