Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)


What is the role of an Adult Case Manager?


The Role of the Case Manager

  • Helps you find the supports that you need and want in your life.
    • I can provide you with information on activities in your community
    • I will help you fill out forms
    • I can visit your community centre with you
    • I can help you make a phone call to ask about a program
  • We will talk about your goals, such as where you want to live, how you want to spend your days and what support is important to you in your life.
  • We will talk about who can help us find what you are looking for. For example, a place to live, support to find a job or volunteer, hobbies and more.
  • Help you understand what the support you need means to you.
    • You have choices. The government pays for some supports. There are some supports that you can pay for. Some supports are free.
  • I will help you when you have problems that you did not expect. For example:
    • If you get sick and need help with personal care, your case manager can help you find support.
    • If you receive mail that you don’t understand, your case manager can read your mail and help you understand.
    • If you lose your job, your case manager can help you connect with employment supports.
    • If you lose a special needs worker, your case manager can help you find a new worker.

Do you help your clients set their own goals when developing their plan?


We help our clients set their own goals when developing their plan.

  • Service Coordination’s client is the person with a disability.
  • Our focus is planning for the person needs and wants. We value each person’s ability to contribute to planning his or her own life.
  • We ask that everyone involved in planning with this person support his or her goals.
  • There are times when a person’s goals become different from his or her parents’ plans for them. This is a normal part of becoming an adult with our own ideas.

What are the individual rights to make their own decisions?

  • A person can legally make their own decisions once he or she turns 18 and is an adult.
  • He or she makes the decisions that affect their life. This includes how they want to live, how they spend their time, and how they spend their money.
    • Unless the person has been legally not able to make his or her own choices. Having a disability does not mean that a person cannot participate in planning.
  • A parent can be the trustee for their son or daughter’s ODSP.
  • ‘Substitute decision making’ is for medical matters under the health care act, and is applied when an adult truly cannot act for himself or herself.
  • A legal guardian is a person who has the legal authority to make decisions about personal care and/or property of another person. For questions about legal guardianship, we suggest consulting a lawyer.

What is the role of Developmental Services Ontario (DSO)?


The role of Developmental Services Ontario (DSO)

  • Developmental Services Ontario helps adults who live in Ontario, are 18 or older and have a developmental disability. We are the starting point to request supports and activities that are paid for by the Ministry of Community and Social Services.
  • You do not need to request supports and activities through DSO:
    • If you have your own funds. You can directly contact organizations to request their services. You can learn more about supports and activities available for purchase by calling 2-1-1 or by visiting Service Coordination (www.scsottawa.on.ca) and clicking on Resources then clicking on Search.
    • If the supports you want are not funded by the Ministry of Community and Social Services. For example, if a person goes to a public school that is paid for by the government. If a person goes to a private school, they pay with their own money.
  • When you apply for supports and activities through DSO, you will meet three kinds of staff.
    • Intake Worker. This is the first person that you will talk to. They will ask you for information about your disability and where you live. This is to make sure that you have the right to have the supports that are paid for by the government.
    • An Assessor meets with you and other persons who know you well. This could be a friend, family member or someone who works with you. The Assessor wants to learn about your likes and dislikes, and the activities and supports that you need. You will meet with the same Assessor twice and only know them for a short time.
    • Matching and Linking Coordinator. A Matching and Linking Coordinator will contact you when one of the supports you requested has a spot for you.

What is the role of the Assessor at Developmental Services Ontario (DSO)?


The role of the Assessor at Developmental Services Ontario (DSO)

  • After the intake worker makes sure that we can help you apply for services, you will hear from an Assessor. The Assessor will contact you within six months.
  • The Assessor meets with you and other persons who know you well. This could be a friend, family member or someone you work with. The Assessor wants to learn about your likes and dislikes, and the activities and supports that you need.
    • Your conversations with the Assessor will help him or her fill out forms about you. These are:
      • Application for Developmental Services and Supports (ADSS)
      • Supports Intensity Scale (SIS)
      • Assessor Summary Report (ASR)
    • The Assessor will send you a copy of the information they wrote down about you. You can share this information with anyone you want.
  • Once the Assessor knows you, the Assessor can tell you about ways to get the activities and supports that you want.
  • Some activities and support may be available right away and some may have waiting lists.
  • For any activities and supports that have waiting lists, the Assessor will submit an application for you.
  • It is important that you give correct information to the Assessor so that you are told about supports and activities that meet your needs.
  • If your phone number, address or support needs change months or years later, please contact the intake worker at DSO to let us know. We will help you if any changes need to be made to the forms you completed with the Assessor.

How does it work to get services in high demand with Developmental Services Ontario (DSO)?


Accessing services in high demand with Developmental Services Ontario

  • When an agency has a spot in a residential, community participation or respite program, they tell a DSO Matching and Linking Coordinator. For example:
    • A spot in a support program in an east-end apartment with a male roommate in his 40s who has some independent living skills.
    • A spot in a downtown day program that teaches cooking, computer use and other life skills.
    • A spot in a home where men and women can stay for a weekend with help from staff.
  • The DSO Matching and Linking Coordinator searches the waiting list for the person who fits best with the open spot.
    • The spot might be best for a man or for a woman.
    • The spot might be best for someone who needs a lot of support.
    • The spot might be best for someone who is young or someone who is old. This might be so that everyone already living there has the support that they need and gets along.
  • The DSO Matching and Linking Coordinator is fair and gives everyone an equal chance. The Coordinator sends to the agency the application forms you completed without your name, date of birth or address.
  • If the agency tells the Coordinator they want to meet the person, the coordinator calls you to tell you a spot is available and that you will meet with the agency to talk about it. If you say yes to meeting the agency, the Coordinator will tell the agency who the person is and the agency will call you to set up a visit.
  • The agency will tell you more about what the activity or support is. You have a choice. You can say ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to the spot.
  • The agency with the spot also has a choice. They can say ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to you using the spot.
  • If you and the agency both say ‘yes’, then the spot is yours. You will have that support. DSO will remove your name from the wait list and move it to the list of persons supported by that agency.
  • If you or the agency says ‘no’, then you do not have that spot. The spot will be offered to the next most urgent person who best fits with the open spot.
  • If you do not have that spot, you will stay on the waiting list.
  • You stay on the waiting list until you get a spot. Even if it takes a long time.
  • Remember to call DSO if your address, phone number changes and if what you need changes. Call intake to explain the changes.

Please contact us for more information: