Self-Empowerment Comes to Ohio


In 2000, empowered by the self-advocacy national movement, the Ohio Self Determination Association (OSDA) was established, adding its voice to the chorus of nearly 600 other national, state, and local organizations. The OSDA creates change that empowers people with disabilities to direct their lives. OSDA provides training and resources in all 88 Ohio counties and taps resources available through the…

Full Participation in Communities


In 2001, Ohio took the initial steps to improve availability and quality of home and community-based services for people with developmental disabilities. Working in collaboration with county boards, private providers, consumers, and advocates, the state redesigned the developmental disabilities system to allow more people to live and work in the community instead of institutions. In February 2001, President Bush announced…

Ohio Advocates for Victims with Disabilities


In 2004, Gov. Robert Taft signed the victims of crime bill to increase protections for people with developmental disabilities. The measure made it a crime to endanger a person with a developmental disability in much the same way that endangering a child is a crime. Congress amended the Assistive Technology Act to support state programs addressing assistive technology needs for…

Words Matter


On April 24, 2007, the Ohio General Assembly eliminated the words “idiot,” “lunatic,” and “imbecile” as descriptions of people with developmental disabilities from the Ohio Revised Code. Before the end of the decade, Senate Bill 79 would change the name of the Ohio County Boards of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities to the County Boards of Developmental Disabilities, and the…

Federal Assistance for County Boards


In 2009, at the height of the recession, President Obama signed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), which included Enhanced Federal Medicaid Assistance Percentage (EFMAP) match-funding to assist county boards that had lost state funding due to the economic downturn.