DDD Initiatives

New Jersey Olmstead Plan

The Olmstead Initiative is DDD's plan for moving 1,850 residents from its seven developmental centers into the community over eight years. This plan is outlined in a document called Path to Progress, which was released in May, 2007. On June 22,1999 , the United States Supreme Court issued a landmark decision for individuals with developmental disabilities, recognizing community living as a civil rights issue. In Olmstead v. L.C., the Court determined that the unjustified institutionalization of people with disabilities violates the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA). Specifically, the Court ruled that states are required to provide community-based services for individuals with disabilities who are residing in institutions if the appropriate professionals determine that the individual is capable of residing in the community, the individual does not oppose community living, and the placement can be reasonably accommodated by the state.

CLEP is part of the implementation of the NJ Olmstead Plan under the direction of the New Jersey Department of Human Services, Division of Developmental Disabilities (DDD). CLEP provides information and support about community transition to families of individuals living in any developmental center in NJ in accordance with the Olmstead Plan. CLEP works closely with individuals who reside in developmental centers and their family members informing them on the supports, services, resources and residential options that are available for a life in the community. CLEP team members provide direct support through phone calls, individual visits with families, and accompanying families on visits to community providers to see existing homes.

Community Services Wait List Meetings (CSWL)

CLEP is part of the implementation of the NJ Olmstead Plan under the direction of the New Jersey Department of Human Services, Division of Developmental Disabilities (DDD). CLEP provides information and support about community transition to families of individuals living in any developmental center in NJ in accordance with the Olmstead Plan. CLEP works closely with individuals who reside in developmental centers and their family members informing them on the supports, services, resources and residential options that are available for a life in the community. CLEP team members provide direct support through phone calls, individual visits with families, and accompanying families on visits to community providers to see existing homes.

CLEP is invited to speak at CSWL orientation meetings, hosted by New Jersey's Division of Developmental Disabilities, located throughout the state of New Jersey. CLEP's role at these CSWL orientation meetings is to give individuals and families a real picture of what types of community services and supports can be utilized for their loved one. This is done through PowerPoint presentations of individuals who are using an individual budget to select support staff, create employment and volunteer opportunities, and participate in activities that they choose. It can be overwhelming to determine the needed and possible supports that available, and CLEP shares stories of people who have successfully used their budgets to live a healthy and happy life in their community.

An “individual budget” is the amount of money designated by DDD to provide services for an individual at his or her assessed level of need. The self-directed option means individuals and their families take the lead in finding and obtaining the services they want and need. However, individuals can choose the “provider-managed option” instead, which means they choose a provider to manage their services and supports.