The Olmstead Decision and Housing: Opportunity Knocks
On June 22, 1999, the Supreme Court of the United States issued its decision in Olmstead v. L.C. This important lawsuit against the State of Georgia questioned the state’s continued confinement of two individuals after the state hospital’s physicians had determined that they were ready to return to the community. The Supreme Court described Georgia’s action as “unjustified isolation,” and determined that it violated these individuals’ rights under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The impact of this decision on people with disabilities who are in institutions, or who are at risk of institutionalization, has already prompted a great deal of activity by advocates, states, and the federal government (Opening Doors).
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