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Olmstead Day Celebration

Lois Curtis and Elaine Wilson stand on the steps of the Supreme Court buildingDate: Tuesday, June 25 from noon to 1:30 p.m. CT
Location: Online

This year is the 25th anniversary of the 1999 Supreme Court Decision Olmstead v. L.C. 25 years ago, when Elaine Wilson and Lois Curtis advocated for – and won – their rights, they also reaffirmed the rights of disabled Americans everywhere, including people for generations to come. Their right to live in the most integrated setting possible came about thanks to the Americans with Disabilities Act and the countless advocates who came before.   

On June 25, the Olmstead Implementation Office invites you to celebrate disability advocacy. We will learn from Colleen Wieck of the Governor’s Council on Developmental Disabilities about the long history of disability advocacy that brought us to today. David Dively of the Minnesota Council on Disability will share about how disability advocacy continues to shape life today, and self-advocate Brittanie Hernandez-Wilson will discuss the future of disability advocacy. All three speakers will share insights on the past, present, and future of disability advocacy in a panel discussion. 

Register for Olmstead Day

25 Days of Olmstead

Celebrate 25 Days of Olmstead with a daily email June 1 through 25! OIO will be sharing insights about Olmstead, accessibility, intersectionality, resources and more for 25 days leading up to the Olmstead Day celebration. Subscribe to this special email list to get the daily emails.

Sign up for 25 Days of Olmstead

35W Bridge Lighting

This year, the 35W bridge in Minneapolis will be lit to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Olmstead decision. The bridge will be lit on June 22, 2024 a half hour before sunset to a half hour after sunrise. It will be lit in the colors of the disability pride flag. The Olmstead Implementation Office will share a photo of the lit up bridge on our website, social media, and newsletter.

Here are what the colors of the disability pride flag represent:

  • Black is to mourn and honor people with disabilities who have died.
  • Green is for sensory disabilities.
  • Blue represents emotional and psychiatric disabilities.
  • White stands for non-visible and undiagnosed disabilities.
  • Gold is for neurodiversity.
  • Red represents physical disabilities.

About Olmstead Day

Olmstead Day is celebrated every year to commemorate the anniversary of the 1999 Supreme Court decision Olmstead v. L.C.

The lead plaintiffs of the Olmstead decision were Lois Curtis and Elaine Wilson, two women with mental illness and developmental disabilities who were confined to a psychiatric unit at the Georgia Regional Hospital. Although mental health professionals deemed them ready to live in community-based programs, they remained institutionalized for several years. They filed a lawsuit under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) to be released from the hospital.  

 On June 22, 1999, the Supreme Court issued its landmark decision, Olmstead v. L.C. The ruling stated that segregating people with disabilities without a valid reason is discrimination and public entities must provide community-based services when appropriate.

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