The expansion of permanent supportive housing using innovative systems-level approaches like those authorized in HUD's reformed Section 811 Program holds great promise for systematically creating new integrated supportive housing opportunities in states and localities across the country. Integrated supportive housing approaches are responsive to the community integration mandates within the 1999 U.S. Supreme Court Olmstead decision, a landmark disability rights case which affirms the right of people with disabilities to live in the most integrated setting appropriate to their needs.
Implementation of the formal partnerships between state housing and health and human service agencies that the Melville Act requires for Section 811 PRA funding can help states align themselves with Olmstead as well as other policy and funding initiatives that offer the opportunity to increase community living options for non-elderly people with disabilities, reduce reliance on expensive institutional care, and prevent and end homelessness among people with disabilities.
- U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) Olmstead Page
- DOJ Statement on Enforcement of Olmstead & the Integration Mandate in Title II of ADA
- Bazelon Center Olmstead Page
- CMS Info Bulletin on New Housing Resources to Support Olmstead Implementation
Year of Community Living
In June 2009, President Obama marked the 10th anniversary of the Olmstead decision by launching "The Year of Community Living," directing the U.S. Departments of Health and Human Services (HHS) and Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to work together to identify ways to improve access to housing, community supports, and independent living arrangements for people with disabilities.
The Year of Community Living initiative created a HUD/HHS partnership that has resulted in new programs to increase affordable and accessible housing options for people with disabilities who receive Medicaid-funded community-based long-term care services and supports. This includes the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services' (CMS) Real Choice System Change Grants recently awarded to six states to develop sustainable partnerships with state housing agencies, and the Housing Capacity Building Initiative for Community Living project.
CMS Money Follows the Person (MFP) Initiative
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services' (CMS) Money Follows the Person (MFP) Initiative, which to date has helped 12,000 disabled individuals move back into their communities, was continued under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) for an additional five years and with new grants expected to help an additional 13,000 people.
Opening Doors: Federal Strategic Plan to Prevent and End Homelessness
Published by the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness (USICH), the Federal Plan is the nation's first ever comprehensive strategic plan to prevent and end homelessness. Objective #4 calls for an expansion of permanent supportive housing in partnership with state and local governments and the private sector.
The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA)
Provisions in the Affordable Care Act (ACA) - such as the Health Home demonstration for individuals with chronic conditions, the Rebalancing Incentive Program, the Community First Choice option, and changes to the 1915(i) home and community-based services State Plan option - create new opportunities for states to implement promising and highly cost-effective supportive housing policies by leveraging Medicaid.