In 1999, the U.S. Supreme Court rendered a decision in Olmstead v. L.C., 527 U.S. 581 (1999), indicating that states have a legal obligation to administer programs and activities in the most integrated setting appropriate to the needs of qualified individuals with disabilities. This decision recognized that a state may satisfy this obligation through development of a comprehensive, effective working plan for placing qualified persons with disabilities in less restrictive settings. These plans are known as Olmstead Plans. Our state is beginning to work on a new Olmstead plan and it is has sent out requests for listening sessions and advisory council members. The Arc’s testimony at the listening session may be found below. Keep up with the state’s process here.
The Arc has utilized Olmstead both in its legislative and legal advocacy. Massachusetts policy makers have been responsive to our requests and most recently this has been reflected on the funding commitment for adult community services known as “Turning 22”.
The Commonwealth’s current Olmstead Plan was released in 2008. Policy makers have cited accomplishments such as: