the advocacy monitor

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

5 for 5: Independent Living Budget Increase Campaign Launch

February 13, 2023; 2:00 – 3:30 p.m. Eastern

Register online

Join NCIL as we launch our new advocacy campaign, 5 for 5! We are asking Congress for $500 million to support Independent Living Services. Join us to hear more about this effort and how you can help!


  • Welcome
  • The importance of Centers for Independent Living to our community  
  • Current IL funding and appropriations process
  • How you can help!

Registration Fee: This event is free-of-charge and open to the public.

Visit our in-progress website: or reach out to [email protected] for more information.

5 for 5 Logo: Fund Centers for Independent Living - 500 Million; 5 Core Services
5 for 5 Logo: Fund Centers for Independent Living – 500 Million; 5 Core Services

Welcome and Congratulations to NCIL’s New Executive Director!

The Governing Board of the National Council on Independent Living is happy to announce the appointment of Theo Braddy as its new Executive Director beginning February 1, 2023. Theo will follow retiring Interim Executive Director Darrell Lynn Jones.

Theo served as Chief Executive Officer of the Center for Independent Living of Central PA (CILCP) for nearly 31 years, from the beginning of the Center in 1989. He is noted for being one of the first, if not the first of CIL leader to develop and embrace the concept of Living Well with a Disability. Under his leadership, CILCP built a gym and developed resources to support that goal. Theo was instrumental in PA becoming the first state to pass a law establishing an affordable, accessible rural transportation program. He has also played an important role in establishing and expanding Medicaid waiver services in PA.  

[Read more…]

Funding Available to CILs for Community Vaccination Promotion Efforts!

With the goal of helping older adults and people with disabilities stay healthy, the U.S. Administration for Community Living has funded USAging to launch the Aging and Disability Vaccination Collaborative to fund local activities that encourage vaccination against COVID-19 and the flu for older adults and people with disabilities.

[Read more…]

Join NCIL January 26 for A Regional IL Showcase!

The National Council on Independent Living presents a forum to meet NCIL’s Regional Representatives and learn what CIL and SILC peers are accomplishing.

NCIL Regional IL Showcase

Please register at the link above or for more information please reach out to [email protected].

The National Council on Independent Living (NCIL) is offering a recurring virtual forum in which NCIL’s 10 Regional Representatives will showcase the successes and accomplishments of CILs and SILCs in their regions. NCIL’s Regional Reps are members of NCIL’s Governing Board and are elected from among the NCIL members in their respective regions.  

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IL-NET National T&TA Center for Independent Living Presents… A National Webinar: Non-Traditional Transitions

January 25, 2023; 3:00 – 4:30 p.m. Eastern

Register online or email [email protected] for more information.

The IL-NET National Training & Technical Assistance (T&TA) Center operated by ILRU in collaboration with NCIL, APRIL, and the University of Montana Rural Institute and RTC: Rural, supports CILs and SILCs in building capacity to run strong, effective organizations. This webinar will discuss varied approaches and strategies surrounding non-traditional transitions and diversions, such as transitioning from the justice system or coordinating appropriate housing during and after a disaster or public emergency.


  • Sharif Brown, Program Manager for State Reentry, Alliance of Disability Advocates
  • Betzaida Ramos Chárriez, Directora Ejecutiva, Movimiento para el Alcance de Vida Independiente (MAVI)
  • Marly Saade, PCA Program Coordinator, The Center for Disability Empowerment
  • Susan Hetrick, M.Ed., Executive Director, The Center for Disability Empowerment
  • Jeff Hughes, Executive Director, Progressive Independence
[Read more…]

NCIL Joins National Initiative to Support Local Vaccination Outreach Activities

As the nation enters the coldest months of the winter season with high rates of hospitalization due to COVID-19 and one of the worst flu seasons on record, the need for older adults and people with disabilities to get vaccinated is at a critical point. To combat rising hospitalization rates among older adults and people with disabilities for both COVID-19 and the flu, two groups that are known to experience the most severe illness from these two conditions, the National Council on Independent Living (NCIL) is proud to announce that it is a partner in the Aging and Disability Vaccination Collaborative, a $75 million initiative funded by the U.S. Administration for Community Living to provide outreach, technical assistance and support to promote vaccination uptake.

Led by USAging, the Aging and Disability Vaccination Collaborative will distribute funds to enable organizations across the aging and disability networks to perform an array of vaccination promotion activities. Organizations selected for funding will host community vaccine clinics, provide in-home vaccinations, provide transportation to vaccination sites, and will conduct outreach and education to older adults and people with disabilities among other activities.

[Read more…]

NCIL 2023 Annual Conference: Call for Proposals

2023 Annual Conference on Independent Living Logo: Indivisible. Graphic features intersecting threads.

July 24-27 (Grand Hyatt, Washington, DC)

NCIL is excited to announce our 2023 Annual Conference on Independent Living! The theme of this year’s conference is Indivisible. Our movement is Indivisible. We must advocate together for disability justice, unite with our allies, and fight against ableism and prejudice of all types.

NCIL’s Annual Conference is designed to provide peer support, organizing, advocacy, and learning opportunities. It is the largest Independent Living event of the year. NCIL regularly hosts over 1,000 people, including grassroots advocates, CIL and SILC leadership, members of Congress, government officials, and representatives from other organizations that work for justice and equity for people with disabilities.

This year’s conference will take place onsite in Washington, DC and will be archived and available online for those who cannot join us onsite. NCIL will host 25 workshops. Of those, twenty are reserved for in-person presentations. Five are reserved for presenters who will join us virtually. Those workshops will be streamed live at the Hyatt during the in-person conference.

[Read more…]

ACL Webinar – Strengthening Advocacy in the HCBS Settings Rule: Getting the Services You Need from the Waiver

ACL invites you to a webinar in their series on strengthening advocacy in the Home- and Community-Based Services (HCBS) Settings Rule, Getting the Services You Need from the Waiver, on Wednesday, December 14, 2022.

The HCBS Settings Rule can improve community-based services and supports for people with disabilities and older adults for decades to come. This webinar will provide insight into one of the main strategies stakeholders can use to get the promise of the Rule into everyday life: influencing the services that are included in the waiver application.

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NCIL Mourns the Loss of Bobby Silverstein

NCIL is saddened to learn of the passing of Robert “Bobby” Silverstein, J.D. on November 17, 2022 due to complications from cancer. Bobby leaves behind an enormous legacy because of his behind-the-scenes work to develop and pass the Americans with Disabilities Act and other laws that advance the rights of people with disabilities through his various roles in the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate.

Bobby’s “A Congressional Insider’s Guide to Influencing Disability Policy”, which includes “General Guidelines for Disability Policy Change Agents,” “Developing Organized Coalitions and Strategic Plans,” and “Effective Strategies for Inter-Acting with Policymakers,” are classics that have educated disability advocates on how to bring about systems change for over two decades.

Bobby was staff director and chief counsel for the Senate Disability Policy Subcommittee under former Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA).

“Bobby was as kind as he was brilliant,” said NCIL’s Interim Executive Director Darrell Jones. “He gave more to people with disabilities than we can ever totally thank him for.”

[Read more…]

IL-NET T&TA Center for Independent Living in Partnership with the Administration for Community Living Presents a National Webinar – Being Invited In: Understanding and Respecting Native Disability Culture

November 29, 2022; 3:00 – 4:15 p.m. Eastern

Register online or reach out to [email protected] for more information.

In honor of Native American Heritage month, this webinar will help participants gain an increased understanding of Native Americans with disabilities living in Indian Country and learn best practices for outreach and service delivery. Panelists from a multi-year ACL-funded Native American Independent Living Demonstration grant will share their experiences providing independent living services in Indian Country. They will discuss the following:

  • Key issues tribal communities are facing around disability;  
  • Barriers and best practices to collaboration;
  • Impacts to community-led efforts; and
  • How participants can partner to strengthen work with tribal communities.
[Read more…]