The Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Act of 2000

Public Law 106–402, 106th Congress: Download the Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Act of 2000 (PDF, 356KB)

In every state and territory, programs authorized by the Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Act (DD Act) empower individuals with developmental disabilities and their families to help shape policies that impact them. DD Act programs conduct important research and test innovative new service delivery models. They work to bring the latest knowledge and resources to those who can put it to the best use, including self-advocates, families, service providers, and policymakers. DD Act programs also investigate cases of abuse and serve as advocates for individuals with developmental disabilities and their families.

Programs authorized by the DD Act and overseen by ACL's Administration on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities include:

  • State Councils on Developmental Disabilities (Councils) work to address identified needs by conducting advocacy, systems change, and capacity building efforts that promote self-determination, integration, and inclusion. Key activities include conducting outreach, providing training and technical assistance, removing barriers, developing coalitions, encouraging citizen participation, and keeping policymakers informed about disability issues.

  • State Protection & Advocacy Systems (P&As) are dedicated to the ongoing fight for the personal and civil rights of individuals with developmental disabilities. P&As are independent of service-providing agencies within their states and work at the state level to protect individuals with developmental disabilities by empowering them and advocating on their behalf. P&As provide legal support to traditionally unserved or underserved populations to help them navigate the legal system to achieve resolution and encourage systems change.

  • University Centers for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities Education, Research & Service (UCEDDs) are unique among AIDD program grantees in that they are affiliated with universities, allowing them to serve as liaisons between academia and the community. UCEDDs are a nationwide network of independent but interlinked centers, representing an expansive national resource for addressing issues, finding solutions, and advancing research related to the needs of individuals with developmental disabilities and their families.

  • Projects of National Significance (PNS) efforts focus on the most pressing issues affecting people with developmental disabilities and their families, creating and enhancing opportunities for these individuals to contribute to, and participate in, all facets of community life. Through PNS, AIDD supports the development of national and state policy and awards grants and contracts that enhance the independence, productivity, inclusion, and integration of people with developmental disabilities.

Learn more about the history of the DD Act and the difference it has made for people with developmental disabilities and their families.


Last modified on 04/26/2017