Washington State "risking a lawsuit" by segregating people with disabilities
KING 5 news covers the story of the large number of people with developmental disabilities living in institutions. Since 2009, it has been a top priority of the Department of Justice's Civil Rights Division to achieve desegregation of people with developmental disabilities. Only a handful of states operate more institutions for people with developmental disabilities than Washington. That puts Washington at risk of being sued by the federal government.
"It's the integration mandate, not the integration suggestion, the integration aspiration, but mandate. People need to be in as integrated a setting as they can be," said David Carlson, Disability Rights Washington's Director of Legal Advocacy. Read the rest of the KING5 story at this link.
Allen Walker, left, eats lunch with Jim McGay during a regular outing to shop and go bowling. Walker lived at Fircrest (one of the State's remaining institutions) for more than a decade. He now lives in the community, and McGay has been his caregiver for 19 years. Image from KING 5 coverage.