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The Research and Training Center on Community Living (RTC/CL)
develops evidence-based programs,
policies and practices that further community living
and participation among people with disabilities.

Why It Matters

In 1999, the Supreme Court’s Olmstead v. L.C. decision gave Americans with disabilities the right to live in a community setting rather than in an institution.

Since then there has been increasing progress toward the goal of community living for people with disabilities through deinstitutionalization, anti-discrimination policies, community-based service providers and other systems of care. Yet people with disabilities still face many barriers to achieving enhanced participation and continuity in community living.

The Research Projects

Six research projects are analyzing secondary data to learn how barriers to and experiences of community living may differ across socio-demographic and geographic groups.

With this information as a foundation, five more projects will test new strategies designed to improve community living opportunities for individuals with disabilities.

These interventions focus on housing, health, recreation and community and civic involvement. Two systematic scoping reviews will also inform the other projects.

“These projects represent the state-of-art in terms of understanding the factors that put people with disabilities at risk for institutionalization. The research and advisory teams we have assembled will blend research rigor with relevance to reduce barriers that threaten continuity in community living and support programs that enhance quality of life for Americans with disabilities," said Glen W. White, center director.


The contents of this website were developed under a grant from the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR grant number 90RT5015). NIDILRR is a Center within the Administration for Community Living (ACL), Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The contents of this website do not necessarily represent the policy of NIDILRR, ACL, or HHS, and you should not assume endorsement by the Federal Government.



The Goal

“We want to help people with disabilities fully participate in the community, reduce their risk for institutionalization in a nursing home, hospital or other health care setting and, whenever possible, successfully transition from an institution to a community setting.” 
- Glen W. White, PhD, director of the RTC/CL 

A man greets a woman in a wheelchair and a woman with a service dog.


Pictured above: Jeff Gordon, Ranita Wilks, Rachel Magario and Magario's service dog, Nettie, visit on the University of Kansas campus. 

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