The 1950s: Day Programs to Prevent Institutionalization

In the 1950s, parents and activists worked towards building community rehabilitation programs and day activity centers as an alternative to their sons and daughters staying at home or living in institutions.

The programs were supposed to provide work and socialization time. They were a place of safety and support that allowed adults to stay out of institutions. For many parents, then and now, the reliability of a consistent day program was a source of comfort.

The "safety net" was in place.

Woman at a table
Photo courtesy Ann Marsden