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Case Study: Security and independence for adults living with disability

Sep 13, 2019

Sarah’s son Jack is an adult with Down Syndrome. He lives alone in his own home and one of Sarah’s biggest worries is knowing whether Jack has returned home from work safely. Sarah calls Jack daily to ensure that he’s OK and that he’s locked the front door behind him, especially after walking home from his evening shifts.

With his home being located on a main road, as well as being close to a lane-way, Sarah is conscious of Jack’s vulnerability. As a parent of an adult living with intellectual disability, she struggles with her son’s need for both independence and protection.


We were asked to review the security system in Jack’s home and suggest improvements. While talking to Sarah and walking through the home, we took note of Jack’s daily routine and potential security risks.

Understanding Jack’s daily interaction with his environment was an important step in establishing the right smart home solution. Two major issues we identified were that Jack has to open the front door to answer it, plus there’s no way to monitor activity in or around Jack’s home. For example, Jack has a cleaner regularly enter his property, plus the proximity to the lane-way unfortunately brings unwanted attention to his home.


Our solution centered on a system that would provide improved security for Jack and peace of mind for Sarah by utilising these smart home features:

  • Live feedback in the form of app based notifications.
  • Remote access to arm and disarm the alarm.
  • Remote access to lock and unlock the front door.
  • Daily activity monitoring.
  • Remote access to view activity outside the property.
  • The ability to remotely answer the door.

Live feedback

The system is an app based security solution that delivers notifications to both Sarah and Jack’s smart phones. Notifications regarding the status of the alarm system (is it armed or disarmed?) and locks provide peace of mind for Sarah, knowing that Jack has returned from work safely and on time.

Remote access for alarm and locks

Sarah and Jack can arm/disarm the alarm and lock/unlock the front door locally or remotely using a smart device app. If Jack has left for work and he has forgotten to secure his home, the system will send a notification reminding him to arm the system, or Sarah can arm the system on his behalf.

Daily activity monitoring

A series of internal motion sensors will discretely monitor Jack’s movement throughout the home to provide Sarah peace of mind knowing that he is going about his normal routine. In time the system will learn patterns in Jack’s daily activities and it will intelligently report on any unexpected events that could highlight potential changes in his health and well being.

Front entrance and driveway monitoring

A video doorbell at the front door and CCTV security cameras will monitor activity outside of Jack’s home. The system is configured to notify Sarah and Jack when people or cars are approaching. Remote access to the video doorbell allows Sarah and Jack to see who is at the front door and speak to guests without opening the front door. The system will also keep an image log of visitors, recording visual activity to the exterior of Jack’s home 24 hours a day.


Using a smart security solution has enabled Sarah to step back and allow Jack a new level of independence. Sarah is able to discretely monitor the safety of her son and support him without imposing on his comfort and lifestyle. An unexpected result of the system installation was that it revealed that Jack’s cleaners were charging for four hour shifts instead of the system logged two hour shifts!

Thanks so much for the recent upgrade to the security system in our son’s home. As you are aware he is a vulnerable adult with an intellectual disability living in his own home. The upgrade to perimeter security has meant that he is safe guarded while at home. The external video surveillance cameras and the video activated door bell has given us the ability to know who comes and goes to his home without intruding on his privacy. This has been a life changing experience for us all and all monitored through the easy to use app.

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