The Office of Inspector General, by impartial evaluation, investigation and reporting, seeks to ensure the
integrity of department programs and operations including the fair, accurate and nondiscriminatory
delivery of benefits and services to qualified state residents.

Olmstead Office

Olmstead Mission Statement

The mission of the Council is to develop and monitor the implementation of a plan to promote equal opportunities for people with disabilities to live, learn, work and participate in the most integrated setting in the community of their choice through West Virginia’s compliance with Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

Olmstead Vision Statement

The vision of the Council is for all West Virginians with disabilities to live, learn, work and participate in the most integrated setting in the community of their choice.

Below you will be able to access more information on the following Olmstead-related issues:

What is Olmstead?

On June 22, 1999, the United States Supreme Court ruled that unnecessary institutionalization of people with disabilities was a form of discrimination based on disability that was prohibited by Title II of the ADA. This landmark decision led to the federal government issuing guidance, policy directives, statutory and regulatory changes, and numerous funding and grant opportunities to assist states in achieving full compliance with Title II of the ADA.

Olmstead v. L.C. is a landmark decision upholding the civil rights of people with disabilities to receive services and supports in the most integrated setting in the community. The case was filed on behalf of two women with developmental and mental health disabilities who were residing in a state-operated institution in Georgia. The lawsuit alleged that the state's failure to provide community-based supports was a form of discrimination prohibited by Title II of the ADA.

The ADA is a civil rights law enacted to "provide a clear and comprehensive prohibition of discrimination on the basis of disability." Title II of the ADA establishes the requirements for public entities, including state governments and health care services which are funded and administered by state agencies.

On August 13, 2003, the Olmstead Office was established through a directive by then-Governor Bob Wise to the Department of Health and Human Resources (DHHR). The directive was to create a position for a full-time Olmstead Coordinator to develop, implement, and monitor West Virginia Olmstead activies for compliance with Title II of the ADA.

Important Olmstead Decision Links

Olmstead Council

The first action taken by the Olmstead Office was to establish an Olmstead Council with representation of people with disabilities (and family members), advocates, providers, and state agency representatives. The Olmstead Council has the following responsibilities:

  • Advise the Olmstead Office concerning the implementation of the statewide Olmstead Plan
  • Review the activities of the Olmstead Office
  • Provide recommendations for the long-term care support system
  • Identify systemic issues and make recommendations for change
  • Monitor, revise and update the Olmstead Plan

The Olmstead Council Is comprised of members with disabilities and/or immediate family members of a person with a disability, advocacy and disability organizations, providers and/or knowledgeable representation of home and community services and supports, state Agencies and at-large members.

Important Olmstead Council Links

Olmstead Plan: Building Inclusive Communities

On October 12, 2005, Governor Joe Manchin III signed Executive Order 11-05 formally directing the implementation of the Olmstead Plan: Building Inclusive Communities. The Executive Order directed:

  • The implementation of the Plan within the budgetary constraints of the State
  • The cooperation and collaboration between all affected state agencies and the Olmstead Office
  • The submission of an annual report to the Governor

Important Olmstead Plan Links

Information, Referral and Assistance

The Olmstead Office provides West Virginians with information, referral and assistance with Olmstead-related issues.

Information and referral concerning the Olmstead decision, West Virginia Olmstead activities, community-based supports and providers, and advocacy services.

Assistance can be provided to resolve individual or systemic Olmstead-related complaints or issues.

In addition, the U.S. Office of Civil Rights (OCR) and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) are the federal agencies with enforcement and investigatory powers concerning discrimination on the basis of disability and Title II of the ADA.

Important Information, Referral and Assistance Links

Olmstead Transition and Diversion Program

The Olmstead Office issues grant to Community Access, Inc. to administer the Olmstead Transition and Diverison Program. The intent of the program is to assist people with disabilities who reside in a facility or are at imminent risk of facility placement.

The funding for this program is very limited and can support approximately 60-80 people per year.

Important Olmstead Transition and Diversion Program Links

Coordinator

Vanessa VanGilder

Contact Information:

State Capitol Complex

Building 6, Room 817-B

Charleston, WV 25305

Phone: (304) 558-3287

Toll-free: (866) 761-4628

Fax: (304) 558-1992