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Independent Living News & Policy from the National Council on Independent Living

Call for Sessions Now Open for the 2020 HCBS Conference!

ADvancing States is pleased to announce the opening of its Call for Sessions for the 2020 Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) Conference, August 31- September 3, 2020 in Washington, DC.

For the last 35 years, the HCBS Conference has convened state and federal agencies around improving systems that deliver long-term services and supports (LTSS) for all ages and abilities. The HCBS Conference attracts more than 1,500 attendees from over 50 states and territories and highlights best practices from across the country in home and community-based services.

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Become a Disability Rights Defender! Give to NCIL Monthly

Dear NCIL Supporter,

Your support of NCIL means everything to us. Whether you’re a NCIL member, you’ve attended one of our trainings or conferences, you’ve donated to us – or all of the above! – you are a part of making our crucial work happen on Capitol Hill and beyond. Now there’s a new way to support NCIL, by giving monthly.

Your monthly gift, given automatically through your credit or debit card will allow us to have the funds to advocate every day for Independent Living, on and off the Hill, twelve months a year.

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Election Assistance Commission Names NCIL 2019 Recipient of Clearinghouse Award for Improving Accessibility for Voters with Disabilities

NCIL is pleased to announce that we’ve been named as a 2019 recipient of the Clearinghouse Award for Improving Accessibility for Voters with Disabilities. The award is a result of NCIL’s Achieving Accessibility for Election Websites and Sample Ballots Toolkit.

U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) Annual Clearinghouse “Clearie” Awards Recognize Outstanding Innovations in Elections, and Best Practices in Accessibility and Recruiting, Training and Retaining Election Workers. The EAC’s press release is available below.

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Reminder – 2020 Annual Conference Workshop Proposal Deadline: Thursday, January 23

July 20-23, 2020; Grand Hyatt, Washington

Deadline Extended

NCIL is extending the deadline for our 2020 Call for Workshop Proposals. We will now accept applications until Thursday, January 23, 2020 at 11:59 p.m. EST. Please visit our 2020 conference web page for more information.

Plain Language

We are also pleased to release the plain language version of our 2020 Call for Workshop Proposals.

The plain language application form is also available in Word or plain text.  

Conference Logo: Evolution of our Revolution - 2020 Annual Conference on Independent Living. Graphic features a speech bubble and heart icon.

2020 Annual Conference Sponsorship, Advertising, and Exhibiting Opportunities

NCIL’s 2020 Annual Conference on Independent Living will be held July 20-23 in Washington, DC. Generous support from sponsors, exhibitors, and advertisers last year resulted in a Conference of nearly 1,500 participants! We seek your partnership as we begin to prepare for our 2020 Annual Conference celebration.

Due to last year’s attendance, NCIL’s tremendous successes in 2019, and excitement surrounding the theme and the 30th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, the buzz has already started for this year’s Annual Conference on Independent Living, Evolution of Our Revolution.

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NCIL Statement on Race & Equity

Please take a moment to read NCIL’s latest statement on race and equity at

We are linking the statement here because of length, but it is critically important and we want everyone to read this. 

Take Action to Protect Social Security Benefits!

The Social Security Administration has proposed a new rule for people who get disability benefits. The proposed rule would apply to both SSDI and SSI and would change the number and frequency of Continuing Disability Reviews (CDRs). If this rule is finalized, over 2 million people could be at risk of losing their disability benefits over the next 10 years.

Social Security is a lifeline that so many people with disabilities depend on. We need to fight this proposed rule!

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Julie Hocker Nominated for Assistant Secretary of Labor

This Tuesday, it was announced that the President intends to nominate Julie Hocker to be an Assistant Secretary of Labor (Disability Employment Policy). Hocker currently serves as both the Commissioner of the Administration on Disabilities (AOD) and the Director of the Independent Living Administration (ILA) at the Administration for Community Living (ACL).

Hocker became the Director of the ILA this past summer with ACL’s reorganization. NCIL previously expressed concern with the reorganization. We were very concerned because ILA needs a full-time Director; not someone splitting their time with another role. Further, the Rehabilitation Act requires that the Director of the ILA must be an individual with “substantial knowledge of independent living services”.

We sincerely hope ACL will take this opportunity to once again separate these two positions, and that the HHS Secretary will appoint someone with a strong background in Independent Living to serve as the Director of the ILA.

Deadline Extended: Apply for IL-NET’s National Learning Collaborative on Youth Transition at CILs by January 15, 2020!

Deadline Extended! Applications will now be accepted through Wednesday, January 15, 2020 at 11:59 p.m. EST. Apply today!

Are you excited to develop a youth transition program at your Center for Independent Living (CIL), but need a little help to get there?

IL-NET is offering an exciting new approach to support CILs that are ready to make a commitment to young people with disabilities.

Apply online

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Organizers Forum: Disability Organizing in 2020

Hear some powerful disability leaders share their visions for 2020. How is community organizing in disability communities going? How strong are we? What can we do differently? How are we addressing racism and intersectionality? What challenges and opportunities do we face this coming year? Please join to share your own and engage in dialogue!

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