ADA 30th Anniversary - Foster Mom Linda

How the ADA and OCR’s Work to Enforce it Remove Barriers for Individuals with Disabilities to be Foster Parents

Linda Pitsoulis had a desire to open her home to children placed in Georgia’s foster care system.  She submitted an application to the Georgia Division of Family & Children Services, completed the home study process, and waited for the agency to tell her when she would finally meet the young person who would become a part of her life.  Unfortunately, Linda encountered discrimination based on stereotypes about people with disabilities.  Frustrated and upset but not defeated, Linda filed a complaint with the HHS Office for Civil Rights (OCR) alleging that the foster care agency improperly used disability to make placement decisions without an individualized assessment and did not offer her the array of support services that are offered to other foster parents.  Because of Linda’s self-advocacy, OCR entered into a settlement with Georgia to improve access to the foster care system for people with disabilities.  Linda recorded this video to encourage people with disabilities to stand up for their rights and consider applying to become a foster or adoptive parent to a child in foster care.

Content created by Office for Civil Rights (OCR)
Content last reviewed on July 30, 2020