The Lanterman Act says the regional center’s Board of Directors must represent the developmental disabilities community. At least 25 percent of the board members must have a developmental disability. At least half of the board members must have a developmental disability or be a parent or legal guardian of a person with a developmental disability.Sections 4625 and 4622. The board must also reflect the geographic and ethnic traits of the region it serves. This diversity helps more people get the regional center services they need, no matter their race, ethnicity, religion or income.
The Lanterman Act says regional centers must use the state’s money in ways that do not discriminate against any person, group, or family based on age, race, ethnicity, or the language they speak. The law says the Department of Developmental Services (DDS) and the regional centers must collect information each year on regional center “purchase of service.” This information will help find regional centers communities that are underserved.Section 4519.5(a) and (b). “Purchase of service” is the term used with the “Purchase of Service Fund.” This is the state money the regional centers can use only to buy services for people with disabilities.Title 17, Cal. Code of Regulations, section 54302(a)(52). Each year, regional centers and DDS must post information on how each regional center is using its “purchase of service” money.Section 4519.5(c) and (d). They must include the number and percentage of people, by age, race or ethnicity, disability, and residence type (including language spoken) who are eligible for regional center, but not receiving purchase of service funds.Section 4519.5(b). This means they are clients, but not getting any services. Within three months of posting this on their websites, each regional center must hold public meetings about the information.Section 4519.5(e). Each regional center must tell DDS its plan to make its purchase of services equal among groups of eligible people.Section 4519.5(f)(1)(C). DDS may provide more money to help regional centers address disparities in their purchase of service practices.Section 4519.5(h)(1). This money could pay for things like more direct-care bilingual staff, cultural competency training, and outreach to underserved groups.