the advocacy monitor

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


Tom Olin Needs Your Cards and Letters

Tom Olin is in Intensive Care Unit in Methodist Specialty and Transplant Hospital in San Antonio, Texas. We are asking everyone in the Independent Living community to send him cards and letters for two reasons:

  1. To show our love and support.
  2. Tom is seriously ill and needs the best medical care possible. Hospitals are like all institutions. If doctors and staff know people are watching and that Tom is important to many people, they may well give more attention and better medical care.

Image: Tom Olin stands on the Edmund Pettus Bridge. Please send your cards and letters today to:

Tom Olin
Methodist Specialty and Transplant Hospital
8026 Floyd Curl Dr.
San Antonio, TX 78229

Tom is the social documentarian of the disability rights movement. He spent his life in the grassroots, building that incredible collection of iconic photos of our historic struggle for civil rights and inclusion. Many of you know him from the Annual Conference on Independent Living and the Road to Freedom Bus Tour, which toured the country twice, in 2007 and 2014-2015 during the 25th anniversary of ADA.

Now is our chance to give back to Tom. Please distribute this notice widely.

California Independent Living Conference: Leading the Charge – Registration Open

Monday, June 12th, 2017; Sacramento, CA

The California Foundation for Independent Living Centers is excited to announce its first statewide Independent Living: Leading the Charge Conference. Join us at the Sacramento Convention Center on June 12th, 2017. This gathering is intended to bring together Independent Living Center staff, boards and volunteers from across California and the western region to learn and share best practices related to Independent Living Center core services, innovations and partnerships.

Also plan to stay an extra day for the 2017 Disability Capitol Action Day on Tuesday, June 13th at Cesar Chavez Park and march to the Capitol for disabled rights!

Read more and register for the conference at the CFILC website.

Open Position: NCIL Staff Accountant (Washington, DC)

NCIL logo - National Council on Independent LivingReports to: Executive Director

As a membership organization representing Centers for Independent Living (CILs), Statewide Independent Living Councils (SILCs), people with disabilities, and disability rights organizations, the National Council on Independent Living (NCIL) advances independent living and the rights of people with disabilities through consumer-driven advocacy. NCIL envisions a world in which people with disabilities are valued equally and participate fully.

Function: The Staff Accountant is responsible for administration of financial analysis, income and expenses, purchasing, payroll, billing and budget audit, and contract review. As Staff Accountant, this person will perform varied comprehensive accounting services in connection with the financial operation of NCIL. This person also performs all human resource duties.  [Read more…]

Temporary NCIL Phone Number

NCIL logo - National Council on Independent LivingDear NCIL Members:

NCIL is moving to a new phone provider and we are experiencing problems with our phone line. NCIL’s phone number (202-207-0334) is currently unavailable. Please dial 202-864-4253 or 1-844-778-7961 (toll free) to reach the NCIL office while we work to correct the problem. Of course, you can always email us at We are very sorry for the inconvenience!


NCIL Staff

Don’t Wait – Support NCIL to Save Healthcare!

35th Anniversary Logo: NCIL – National Council on Independent Living. Celebrating 35 Years of Advocacy. Graphic features party candles.The first 100 days of the Trump administration are over. We’ve managed to save healthcare so far, but the war is still waging. Today, the House of Representatives will vote on an amended version of the American Healthcare Act (AHCA), which would roll back protection for those with pre-existing conditions, gut Medicaid, and give states the option of deciding what services to cover – meaning that people in need of certain healthcare services could be forced to move just to get the care they need. Make no mistake: the lives of all people with disabilities are in jeopardy from this bill.

No matter what happens today, we’re going to need all hands on deck. Whether we’re trying to head the bill off in the Senate, or gearing up for another pass in the House, there are still many battles to come. That’s why we need your support, now more than ever.

Make a donation to help us continue our advocacy against the AHCA and contact your Representatives to urge them to vote NO on the AHCA. With your help, we can stop this dangerous bill in its tracks.

Nominate Deserving Youth with Disabilities for the Diana Viets Memorial Award!

Revolution - A Global Independent Living Movement - Annual Conference on Independent Living 2017. Graphic: Continents have been added to NCIL's logo (a blue semi-circle), which forms a globe. A red heart sits between the end points of the semi-circle.The NCIL Annual Meeting and Conference is rapidly approaching. The 2017 Annual Conference on Independent Living will be held July 24-27 at the Grand Hyatt Hotel, Washington, DC. This year, NCIL will again be honoring individuals from the Independent Living field with various awards for their dedication to the Independent Living and Disability Rights Movements.

One of these awards is the Diana Viets Memorial Award. Diana was an energetic young woman with a disability who dedicated her life to empowering young people with disabilities to take an active role in the Independent Living Movement. Through her work at a Center for Independent Living and the NCIL Board, Diana touched the lives of many youth with disabilities. NCIL wants to acknowledge, honor, and encourage our young leaders who are promoting disability pride, spreading the Independent Living philosophy, and fostering the active participation of youth with disabilities in the Disability Rights Movement.

As a member of NCIL, we ask you to nominate young people from your Center and / or community. Individuals eligible for this award should be young adults whose work through Independent Living has had a positive impact on youth with disabilities.

The Diana Viets Memorial Award will be presented to the winner during the Awards Luncheon, Wednesday, July 26, 2017, at NCIL’s Annual Conference.

Please complete the nomination form by Wednesday, June 7, 2017. I look forward to seeing you at the NCIL Conference.  [Read more…]

Join Us for the Global Independent Living Summit!

July 23, 2017

Revolution - A Global Independent Living Movement - Annual Conference on Independent Living 2017. Graphic: Continents have been added to NCIL's logo (a blue semi-circle), which forms a globe. A red heart sits between the end points of the semi-circle.The Independent Living Movement is growing rapidly. In recent years, NCIL has had as many as 1,500 attendees at our Annual Conference from all 50 states and around the world. Centers for Independent Living are springing up in the Philippines, Malaysia, Vietnam, Myanmar, Thailand, Pakistan, Nepal, Cambodia, Taiwan, Mongolia, Korea, Japan, South Africa, the United Kingdom, Germany, Finland, Sweden, Norway, Canada, Mexico, Costa Rica, Brazil, Bolivia, and Peru, to name just a few.

We’re excited to invite delegates with expertise in international Independent Living and disability rights to apply for attendance at a special one day Global IL Summit on July 23rd, 2017, just prior to NCIL’s 2017 Annual Conference, where we will continue to explore international issues through our Conference theme, Revolution: A Global Independent Living Movement.

The Global IL Summit and subsequent Annual Conference represent an unprecedented step forward for NCIL and the Independent Living Movement as a whole. Though the Independent Living movement has its roots in the United States, it is time to move past our isolationist history and welcome collaboration amongst Independent Living advocates of all backgrounds and nationalities. In these uncertain times, joining with our international colleagues can only strengthen us.

Though we all have different challenges to navigate, the experience of confronting bigotry and discrimination is universal among us.

Space is limited, so apply now!

Logos - 1. NCIL: National Council on Independent Living 2. USICD: US International Council on Disabilities 3. JIL 4. CGP: The Japan Foundation Center for Global Partnership

Early Bird Registration Rates for NCIL’s 2017 Annual Conference End at Midnight April 28!

Revolution - A Global Independent Living Movement - Annual Conference on Independent Living 2017. Graphic: Continents have been added to NCIL's logo (a blue semi-circle), which forms a globe. A red heart sits between the end points of the semi-circle.Open our Annual Conference Guide (in PDF or plain text) to find everything you need to know about the 2017 Annual Conference.

Then, register online or by using the printable Registration Form (PDF or plain text). Online registration gives you the ability to register up to three attendees with one transaction and accepts Discover, American Express, Visa and MasterCard.

All registrations received and paid on or before April 28, 2017 are eligible for the Early Bird registration rates.

This year, you can use NCIL’s custom links to reserve your room at the Grand Hyatt or Marriott Metro Center.

Additional details are available on our Conference webpage. See you in July!

Memorandum: Call for Resolutions

This is a call for resolutions to be presented to the NCIL Membership at the Annual Council Meeting. This will be the only call for resolutions to be presented for the 2017 NCIL Annual Council Meeting. The Annual Council Meeting will be held Wednesday, July 26, 2017 at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Washington, DC. The President will recognize the contact person listed in your resolution to speak at the Annual Meeting. If you are unable to attend, please indicate a designee that will be in attendance. A guide to writing a resolution is available on our website, and a link is included below.

NCIL logo - National Council on Independent LivingPlease note: only NCIL members – individuals and organizations – are eligible to submit a resolution for consideration.

Annual Council Meeting Resolutions

The purpose of resolutions is for members to speak directly to what NCIL does and what NCIL stands for. Resolutions to be presented at the Annual Council Meeting must be postmarked or received by Friday, June 2, 2017. The President will appoint a task force to review all resolutions to determine their impact on each of the following areas:

  • NCIL’s Mission & Guiding Principles: Is the proposed resolution consistent / compatible? Is the proposed resolution national in scope?
  • NCIL’s Resources: Can NCIL implement the proposed resolution’s intent with current financial and staff resources?
  • NCIL’s Governance: Does the proposed resolution require any significant changes to NCIL’s bylaws or Standard Operating Procedures?

The resolution task force will provide the NCIL board with a one-page summary of the resolution and the potential impact in each area. The NCIL board will make a recommendation to the membership to adopt or reject the resolution. The recommendation shall be in writing with a brief statement explaining the rationale for the board’s recommendation. All resolutions, including a brief statement with the board’s recommendation, will be included in the Annual Council Meeting packet.

“A call for resolutions shall be disseminated to the NCIL membership no less than 45 days prior to the resolution deadline date. No resolutions will be accepted for consideration after the deadline date.” (NCIL By-Laws, Article III, Section IV).  [Read more…]

Celebrating the Sibling Voice: 2017 National Sibling Leadership Network Conference

  • Hartford, Connecticut; June 24-25, 2017

Join the National Sibling Leadership Network for an opportunity to connect with other adult siblings of people with disabilities and those who care about siblings. Hear from national experts on the latest in sibling services and supports, learn about new research initiatives, and participate in sibling and disability advocacy efforts. You will have an opportunity to learn about resources, share stories, network and gain insight on sibling experiences. Read more at