IL Philosophy and Independent Living Present and Future

The passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act (1990) was a milestone in disability rights and Independent Living history. Although this legislation was a significant gain for people with disabilities, numerous challenges and barriers remain. Continuing advocacy efforts and legal action under the ADA have removed some barriers. Federal and state legislators and medical service providers have changed their perspectives from that of protection and forced care to providing opportunity and choice. Legislation, regulations and programs have incorporated the ideals of IL philosophy to create opportunities for greater independence, community inclusion and self-determination.

Some recent examples include:

  • Federal and State VR programs
  • Welfare to Work and Ticket to Work programs
  • Department of Transportation regulations providing access to all forms of public transportation
  • Access Board - enforcement of accessibility guidelines for construction and modification of housing projects, public buildings, schools, hospitals, stores and restaurants.
  • MiCASSA, Olmstead Supreme Court Decision, Patient Bill of Rights
  • Consumer Directed - Personal Assistant Services (CD-PAS)
  • "Least restrictive environment" guidelines resulting in more people exiting institutions and nursing homes and moving to their own home, living with family or in supported living environments

Back: Rehabilitation Act of 1973