Here is a collection of news stories and editorials relating to our work and the issues we address through our advocacy.

  • Editorial: Bluffs Mental Health Courts Worth Watching

    New mental health court to be tested in Iowa's 4th Judicial District. May provide a model for Nebraska.

  • DisArt Festival: Why Grand Rapids will mount 'the largest disability arts festival in America'

    DisArt Festival, a 15-day, multi-faceted celebration of arts, will be launched in downtown Grand Rapids in April to change perceptions about disabilities through art as well as to showcase the work of artists with disabilities.

  • Two Sides of Disability Housing Debate

    Thoughtful article - what does independence and inclusion look like, and for whom, and where?

  • Senate Inaction on Disability Treaty

    U.S. Senate Chose Politics over more than 1 Billion People with Disabilities

  • Schools Must Offer Communication Supports, Feds Say

    The Obama administration is reminding schools of their wide-ranging responsibilities to students with disabilities who struggle with speech and other communication difficulties.

  • Deaf Men Say Hospital Failed To Provide Interpreters

    Two deaf men have filed a federal lawsuit against Cookeville Regional Medical Center, accusing the hospital of violating the Americans with Disabilities Act for not providing sign language interpreters.

  • Disability Rights Nebraska Report Cites Need for Reforms

    Nebraska group that advocates for the people with disabilities has joined the call for reforms in the use of solitary confinement in state prisons and for better mental health care behind bars.

  • For Many With Disabilities, Special Education Leads To Jail

    Experts attribute the high percentage of individuals with disabilities in the nation’s bloated prison population — which has grown 700 percent since 1970 — in part to deep problems in the education of children with special needs.

  • ATAP ICT Trainings

    Welcome to the ATAP ICT Accessibility Training Portal.

  • When Social Security will let you take only one benefit at a time

    Boston University economist Larry Kotlikoff has spent every week, for over two years, answering questions about what is likely your largest financial asset — your Social Security benefits. His Social Security original 34 “secrets”, his additional secrets, his Social Security “mistakes” and his Social Security gotchas have prompted so many of you to write in that we feature “Ask Larry” every Monday. Find a complete list of his columns here. And keep sending us your Social Security questions.

  • Final Part - Ten Years after LB 1083 Passed

    Final Part of 3 part series: Nebraska Behavioral Health Service Act 10 Years Later: A Look Back at LB 1083

  • The Risk Of Brain Injuries Shifts As Children Grow Up

    As children grow, they learn to crawl, to walk and then to drive. It turns out, the way they get hurt, and in particular their heads, evolves as as their forms of motion change.

  • Part 2 - Ten Years after LB 1083 Passed

    Part 2 of 3 part series: Nebraska Behavioral Health Service Act 10 Years Later: A Look Back at LB 1083

  • Part 1 - Ten Years after LB 1083 Passed

    Part 1 of 3 part series: Nebraska Behavioral Health Service Act 10 Years Later: A Look Back at LB 1083

  • Children with disabilities exploited to sell candy in nonprofit scam

    A Michigan woman is under investigation for using children with disabilities to sell candy for what appears to be a fake nonprofit. Children trapped for so long, they are now adults, going on for 20 years. The victims don't know they've been robbed of the lives they could have had.

  • It's Still Difficult For People With Disabilities To Vote

    "The trouble with voting is, today is it. There’s no do-over tomorrow," Curtis Decker, executive director of the National Disability Rights Network.

  • Increase in Assaults at Arkansas Juvenile Center

    A startling increase in assaults at the Arkansas Juvenile Assessment and Treatment Center in Alexander has come to light. Disability Rights Arkansas has been monitoring the facility closely.

  • New Director of Office of Public Guardian

    The Nebraska Supreme Court has appointed Nebraska attorney Michelle J. Chaffee as the Director of the Office of Public Guardian. Ms. Chaffee has been serving as Legal Counsel for the Legislature’s Health and Human Services Committee. She is expected to begin her new position in December, 2014.

  • Housing Developer Sued for Disability Discrimination

    The U.S. Justice Department filed a lawsuit against West Virginia-based developer Biafora’s Incorporated (Biafora) for violating the Fair Housing Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The lawsuit alleges that Biafora violated the law when they designed and constructed twenty-three residential properties with barriers that make them inaccessible to persons with disabilities.

  • Judith Widener Plea Agreement

    Judith Widener has entered a plea agreement. Facing punishment for committing a Class III Felony that carries a minimum of 1 year in prison or a maximum of 20 years plus a $25,000 fine, Widener has agreed to restitution of $25,857. Sentencing set for October 15th.

  • Deaf Student Still Fighting Creighton University

    Creighton University claims it's a hardship to serve deaf student.

  • Treaty on the Rights of People with Disabilities

    “By adding the appropriate language on federalism in a reservation in the treaty, we can have a treaty that recognizes the rights of persons with disabilities, restores American leadership on disability rights, and maintains existing states’ rights and prerogatives under our Constitution,” Sen. Bob Dole.

  • Senator Looks To Strengthen Disability Services

    A key U.S. senator is looking to introduce legislation to dramatically expand access to community-based services for people with disabilities nationwide.

  • Court Awards Legal Fees to Medical Student who is Deaf

    A federal judge has ordered Creighton University in Omaha to pay nearly $500,000 in legal fees for a deaf medical student who successfully sued the school for discrimination.

  • Mother needed court approval of vasectomy for mentally disabled son

    The Iowa Supreme Court ruled on Friday that an Iowa mother should have sought court approval before arranging a vasectomy for her mentally disabled son.

  • Valued in the Community and a Freely Given Relationship

    NPR Story Corps: Collin Smith, 23 years-old, and his friend Ernest Greene, who is 72 shared this story. When Collin was a sophomore in high school, he was in a car accident that left him without the use of his limbs. Ernest attended the same church as Collin's family and though he'd never met Collin, he decided he wanted to help.

    Follow the link for their audio story.

  • Legal Settlement Aims at Ending Exploitation of Disabled Workers

    The Justice Department announced it has entered into the nation’s first statewide civil rights settlement agreement protecting individuals with disabilities who are segregated in sheltered workshops and facility-based day programs.

  • New federal hiring rules go into effect

    The Obama Administration’s much-hyped new hiring rules for federal contractors and subcontractors went into effect March 24, potentially leading to a significant expansion of federal disability hiring.

  • Court Approved Settlement in NY Adult Home Case

    A comprehensive settlement agreement that will provide approximately 4,000 residents of 23 large "adult homes" in New York City the opportunity to live in their own homes has been approved by the US federal court. "Adult homes" are large board and care homes serving primarily people with serious mental illnesses.

  • Tech Companies Hiring Workers with Disabilities

    Technology companies have discovered the value in hiring workers with intellectual disabilities.

  • How Colleges Flunk Mental Health

    According to a national survey, 30 percent of college students report feeling "so depressed that it was difficult to function" at some time over the past year.

  • National Disability Rights Network Applauds Release of Home and Community Based Services Rule by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services

  • Nebraska prisons failing at rehabilitation programs, report finds

    A new report indicates rehabilitation programs in Nebraska prisons are inadequate and have not kept pace with a growing population of inmates. The lack of treatment options has exacerbated overcrowding, risks public safety and could violate state laws, according to the report.

  • Adults with Autism Working in Hollywood

    Lloyd Hackl, a 22-year-old student with autism, contributed skilled post-production work on “American Hustle,” the film. Hackl’s name will appear in the end credits, along with those of Eli Katz, Patrick Brady and Arielle Guthrie, all students of Exceptional Minds, a Sherman Oaks, Calif. nonprofit vocational center and animation studio for young adults with autism.


    If you purchased a disposable hypodermic product manufactured by Becton, Dickinson and Company from a distributor, wholesaler or other third party between January 1, 1988 and July 30, 2013, you may be entitled to benefits from a class action settlement.

    Call: 1-800-248-2618 or
    Go to this website:

    A federal court authorized this notice. This is not a solicitation from a lawyer.

  • After five years, federal agency hasn't let go of oversight on BSDC

    How people with developmental disabilities are served in Nebraska drew attention from two legislative committees Monday.

  • New Scrutiny for Guardians of Vulnerable Nebraskans

    Disability Rights Nebraska CEO Tim Shaw: “Our current guardianship system needs reform...This case is yet another example of that need.”

  • Audit leads to review of cases assigned to Gering guardian

    "The Nebraska Supreme Court has ordered a systematic review of every guardianship assigned to a Gering woman who was arrested for allegedly embezzling thousands of dollars intended for elderly, blind and disabled residents."

  • Safe Haven director posts bond

    Judith Widener, Director of Safe Haven, charged with the theft of state ward funds was released Tuesday afternoon from the Scotts Bluff County Jail after posting a $50,000 cash bond.

  • Audit finds HHS assistance programs 'riddled with problems,' alleges criminal activity

    Nebraska Auditor finds HHS program for people with disabilities “riddled with problems”; one guardian of 600 individuals arrested for embezzlement.

  • Recently Released Veteran's Unemployment Rate Too High

    A new study revealed that half of the veterans recently separated from the U.S. military and are currently unemployed have not had a full- or part-time job since leaving the military.

  • Disability is a human rights issue.

    People with disabilities are among the most marginalized groups in the world. People with disabilities have poorer health outcomes, lower education achievements, less economic participation and higher rates of poverty than people without disabilities.

  • US Senate takes up Disability Treaty

    US Senate Foreign Relations Committee held a hearing on the Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities (CRPD).

  • Child denied transplant because of intellectual disability, Now thriving

    Three months after receiving a new kidney, a girl who made national headlines when her parents said she was initially denied a transplant due to her intellectual disability is now doing well.

  • Department of Justice to file lawsuit against Texas over Voter ID Law

    The United States’ complaint seeks a declaration the voter photo identification law (SB 14) violates Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act, as well as the voting guarantees of the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution.

  • Social Security to drop term "mental retardation"

    The Social Security Administration will become the latest federal agency to start using the term “intellectual disability” in lieu of “mental retardation.”

  • PBS Documentary Looks At Life On The Autism Spectrum

    A new documentary set to premiere on PBS takes a look at life with autism from the perspective of those with the developmental disorder. “Neurotypical” will have its national broadcast debut Monday, July 29, at 10 p.m. ET on the POV series on PBS.

  • United States filed a lawsuit against the State of Florida to challenge ADA violations

    On July 22, 2013, the United States filed a lawsuit against the State of Florida to challenge ADA violations from the State’s failure to provide services and supports to children with significant medical needs in the most integrated setting appropriate for them. Nearly 200 children with disabilities are currently living in nursing facilities in Florida, often very far from home. They could be served in their family homes or other community-based settings, but remain institutionalized because of deficiencies in Florida’s service system.

  • Victory in New York for adults with mental disabilities.

    In a landmark settlement, thousands of adults with mental disabilities in New York will have a choice in where and how they live with services to succeed and participate in their communities.

  • To Keep Kids Out of Trouble—And Prison

    Teach Them to Understand Their Emotions. After teaching students to understand and talk through their conflicts, schools in Denver and Los Angeles have seen major reductions in disciplinary action.