The Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice today announced that it has concluded an investigation into whether the state of Iowa is submitting residents of the Glenwood and Woodward Resource Centers, two institutions operated by the The state for people with intellectual / developmental disabilities (IDD) in Glenwood and Woodward, Iowa, respectively, to unnecessary institutionalization in violation of Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
The Justice Department determined that there were reasonable grounds to believe that Iowa was not providing services to residents of resource centers, or those at serious risk of institutionalization, in the most integrated adapted to their needs. The Iowa system of care for people with IDD is heavily institutionalized. Essential services and supports that would enable resource center residents to live in their own homes and communities, such as behavioral, crisis and physical health supports, are often not available outside of resource centers. Iowa also does not provide resource center residents and their guardians with enough information about community options. As a result, many Resource Center residents who might receive and do not object to receiving services in the community are unnecessarily isolated in institutions.
“People with disabilities should not be illegally isolated and denied access to the community services they need,” said Deputy Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice. âThe Civil Rights Division will actively defend the rights of people with disabilities to participate fully in community life. “
The ministry’s investigation was conducted under the Institutional Civil Rights Act (CRIPA) and Title II of the ADA. In accordance with CRIPA’s statutory requirements and Title II regulations, the department provided the state with a written notice setting out the department’s findings and supporting facts. The ministry also notified the state of the minimum corrective measures necessary to remedy the alleged violations.
The ministry’s investigation included an extensive document review and analysis; interviews with staff and management of resource centers, the Iowa Department of Social Services, and stakeholders; and observation of support planning meetings. The ministry also organized tours of the Glenwood Resource Center (Glenwood).
Today’s announcement concludes the second and final phase of the ministry’s investigation. The department opened the investigation in November 2019. The first phase was conducted by the Division of Civil Rights and the Office of the United States Attorney for the Southern District of Iowa and focused on conditions in Glenwood. On December 22, 2020, the department informed the state that the department had reasonable grounds to believe that these conditions violate the federal rights of the people who live there and that these violations are consistent with a pattern or practice of resistance to violence. full enjoyment of rights protected by the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States.
Additional information on the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice is available on its website at www.justice.gov/crt.