The primary programs authorized by the Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Act (DD Act) are the state Developmental Disabilities Councils (DD Councils), state Protection and Advocacy (P&A) systems, and state University Centers for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (UCEDD).
Some DD Act programs pursue activities which violate Congressional intent, including activities which:
1. Disregard family input, in violation of the Act's requirement that individuals and families be the "Primary Decisionmakers" through litigation, legislative advocacy, and organizational priorities;
2. Facility closure activities (ICFs/MR deinstitutionalization); and
3. Activities which discriminate against people with severe and profound intellectual and developmental disabilities, and the impact of these activities on these people.
A report of DD Act abuses covering many states is available here.
State Specific reports are available as follows:
Patricia G. Williams
Attorney and Counselor at Law
897 S. Los Robles Avenue
Pasadena, CA 91106
Tel: (626) 796-0605
Fax (626) 792-7119
September 6, 2000
The Court’s conclusion, expressed in a 3-prong standard which has become known as the “Olmstead Rule,” requires community placement “when the State’s treatment professionals determine that such placement is appropriate, the affected persons do not oppose such treatment, and the placement can be reasonably accommodated, taking into account the resources available to the State and the needs of others with mental disabilities.
Olmstead v. L.C. ("Olmstead") is a case which will live as long as the Americans With Disabilities Act ("ADA") survives, and perhaps longer. It is a fair measure of the rights of disabled Americans.
As with any landmark case, there is the holding of the Supreme Court, and the way governmental administrators have chosen to interpret it. While the Supreme Court has spoken, the issue is far from closed.
VOR Olmstead Amicus Brief
IN THE SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES
OCTOBER TERM, 1998
TOMMY OLMSTEAD, Commissioner of the Department
of Human Resources of the State of Georgia, et al.,
L.C. and E.W., each by JONATHAN ZIMRING,
as guardian ad litem and next friend,
The Supreme Court, in its Olmstead ruling, recognized the need for a range of services which respond to the varied and unique needs of the entire disability community.
(1) What Olmstead is Not:
"Olmstead" is not a federal act or statute. Rather, it is a U.S. Supreme Court decision which reinforced the rights of individuals with intellectual disabilities and their parents and guardians to choose the residential setting that is best for these persons.
(2) How Olmstead is misused:
In support of their objective to downsize and close ICF/MR (Intermediate Care Facilities for People with Mental Retardation), certain advocates are emphasizing portions of the Court's opinion regarding "unjustified institutionalization" and ignoring important parts of the Court's decision.