The Department's Statewide Advisory Council is created by M.G.L. c.19B which describes the membership composition and their duties. Following is a summary of the SAC's structure and role.

SAC members are recommended by the Commissioner of the Department, approved by the EOHHS Secretary, and appointed by the Governor.


  • SAC membership must reflect the state geographical and demographic diversity. There are fifteen members.
  • Five represent the Citizen Advisory Boards (CAB).
  • At least five of the remaining ten members represent one of the following:
    State level medical, psychological, nursing, educational, social work, occupational therapy, or bar association; state level associations for industrial or labor groups; and clergy
  • At least one member shall be a person with intellectual disability


  • Members are appointed to three year terms and are limited to no more than two consecutive terms.


The duties of the SAC are clear and straightforward.

  • Advise the Commissioner on policy, program development, and priorities of need in the Commonwealth for services and supports in intellectual disability;
  • Participate with the Department in holding a regular series of public hearings throughout the Commonwealth to obtain the views of the area office and regional citizen advisory boards and other citizens concerning the services of the Department and the need for intellectual disability services;
  • Review the annual plans and the proposed annual budget of the Department, and make recommendations to the Commissioner in regard thereto;
  • Elect a chairperson annually; and
  • Hold at least four regular meetings per year and convene special meetings at the call of the chairperson of the Council, a majority of the Council, or the Commissioner.

For more information, contact the Office of Citizen Leadership (617)624-7755 or

SAC Mission Statement

The Statewide Advisory Council (SAC) to the Department will actively seek information on issues of concern to citizens with specific disabilities.

We will work with and for Citizen Advisory Boards and we will educate and advise the Commissioner on these issues.

This information is provided by the Department of Developmental Services.