Center for Independent Living

What is Community Living?

People with disabilities and older adults have the same opportunities as everyone else to:

  • Choose where to live
  • Earn a living
  • Lead the lives they want
  • Make decisions about their lives

Why Community Living?

People prefer it! It usually costs less! It’s a LEGAL right! Everyone benefits when everyone can contribute.

Independent Living Centers can help!

Independent living centers have programs that help by:

  • Connecting individuals with local services
  • Assisting with job searches
  • Teaching local transit skills
  • Helping with assistive technology
  • Educating individuals and groups about their legal rights
  • Supporting peer mentoring
  • Moving from institutions
  • Helping with self-advocacy
  • School-to-career transition
  • Supporting healthy living
  • Assisting with housing options
  • Assisting with home accessibility

Definition of a Center for Independent Living from Section 702 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended:

CENTER FOR INDEPENDENT LIVING The term “center for independent living” means a consumer controlled, community based, cross disability, nonresidential private nonprofit agency that is designed and operated within a local community by individuals with disabilities and provides an array of independent living services.

A Center for Independent Living

51% of staff are persons with disabilities; 51% of Board of Directors are persons with disabilities; and provides five core services:

  1. Information & referral
  2. Independent living skills training
  3. Individual and systems advocacy
  4. Peer counseling
  5. Transition: transition from nursing homes and other institutions to community-based residences; assisting individuals to avoid institutional placement; and transition of youth with significant disabilities after completion of secondary education to postsecondary life.

National Council on Independent Living – As a membership organization, NCIL advances independent living and the rights of people with disabilities through consumer-driven advocacy. NCIL envisions a world in which people with disabilities are valued equally and participate fully.