Disabilities Assistance
Developmental Disabilities

What would you like to do?

What would you like to do?

What you need to know

What you need to know

​ Nebraska's Olmstead plan is a roadmap to a strong state where we can all live and work in our communities. Nebraska law requires DHHS to create a plan to provide services to people with disabilities in the most integrated settings.

  • State Law Related to Olmstead: Nebraska Revised Statute §81-6121 and §81-6122.  

The “Olmstead Plan" is named after a United States Supreme Court case.

The Olmstead Case

In Olmstead v. L.C. the Supreme Court ruled people with disabilities have a right to lives of inclusion and integration. Disability is a normal part of life and we all benefit from communities made up of diverse people, life experiences, and abilities. 

The Olmstead Case centered on two women, Lois Curtis and Elaine Wilson. Both had disabilities and experienced going in and out of state run hospitals. Their doctors believed they could safely live in the community. Every time they left the hospital, they would go home without support and end up back in a hospital. They asked the State of Georgia to give them the help they needed to integrate into their communities and stop going into hospitals. 

The Supreme Court agreed with Lois and Elaine. The Court ruled they should have the supports needed to live in their homes and communities. The court required states to provide services in the community to people with disabilities when:

  • The services are appropriate;
  • The person does not oppose community-based services; and
  • The community-based services can be reasonably accommodated, taking into account the resources available and the needs of others receiving services.

Nebraska Olmstead Planning Process

The Nebraska Olmstead Plan will be a guide to support community living across the state. The plan establishes strategies to support people to live and receive services in their communities, specifically:

  • People with intellectual or developmental disabilities;
  • People with psychiatric disabilities;
  • People with physical disabilities; and
  • People who are at serious risk of going into an institution or hospital.

The plan looks at current services to make sure they are in the most integrated locations and increase opportunities for community integration. The plan provides strategies to increase and improve:

  • Self-directed, long-term and attendant care;
  • Affordable and safe housing;
  • Transportation;
  • Employment and training;
  • Education;
  • Health and mental health services;
  • Accessible and universally-designed technology; and
  • Support services for families. 

DHHS is working with Technical Assistance Collaborative (TAC) on the Olmstead Plan. The Olmstead Plan is not limited to DHHS. For a state Olmstead Plan to be successful, cities, towns, counties, school districts, lawmakers, state agencies, and others are necessary.

The Nebraska State Legislature required DHHS create a stakeholder group to assist with review and development of the plan. This group gave feedback about the plan and planning process. Information from this group is posted on this webpage.

The Olmstead plan was sent to the Legislature and Governor in December 2019. The plan will continue to improve as a living document to support the State's communities, families, and individuals.

A progress report will be given to the Legislature and Governor by December 15, 2021.


Phase One: TAC analyzes Nebraska's system to develop a general baseline of services, housing, and other factors that support people with disabilities to live in integrated community-based settings.

Phase Two: TAC meets onsite with the state team and the advisory committee, and conducts key stakeholder interviews.

Phase Three: TAC drafts and finalizes the Olmstead Plan.


Olmstead Plan kick-off discussion of strengths, challenges, and opportunities. TAC created a document from Listening Sessions across the state, Olmstead Planning Listening Sessions Themes.

December 2018: DHHS submits an Olmstead plan progress report to the Legislature and Governor.

March 2019: TAC releases a 2019 Olmstead Planning Guidance Document, establishing a road map for Nebraska's Olmstead Plan.

May to August 2019: Meetings with partner agencies and departments

December 15, 2019: Strategic plan due to Legislature and Governor.

December 15, 2021: Progress report due to Legislature and Governor.

2019 to 2021 Olmstead Timeline - detailed timeline





Questions or Comments

If you would have questions about Olmstead, or would like to comment on the plan, you can send an email to DHHS.NEOlmstead@nebraska.gov.