Discrimination takes many forms. One of the most pervasive forms of discrimination is in regard to persons with disabilities. Most are poor, so they have little voice. For 20 years, every state has had a requirement to place developmentally disabled (i.e., "mentally retarded") in some place other than nursing homes. Texas has lagged far behind. So, some disability groups have filed suit in US district court. See San Antonio Express News report. The Arc of Texas and the Coalition of Texans with Disabilities have joined to file this class action suit.
Advocacy, Inc. has also joined in the lawsuit. Garth Corbett, lead attorney, mentions that many DD persons do fine at home. They hold jobs. But when they become ill, they go the hospital. The hospital then mistakenly sends them to a nursing home, where they are trapped because they are ignored. See Advocacy, Inc. report. Their anger and depression then become diagnosed as a behavioral disorder. And, they are deemed incapable of any sort of independent living.
When I worked at Advocacy, Inc., we worked with persons with disabilities all the time. In my 3.5 years there, I represented several developmentally disabled persons who did not belong in a nursing home. They were capable of far more. Some, not all. Texas is woefully behind on creating halfway houses or semi-independent living conditions for those DD persons who can handle it.
The law favors the DD person. So, it is likely the state will eventually have to consider how to fix this (and pay for it) before a judge requires his/her changes. It would be much smarter for the state to get ahead of this and make its own changes. Its "pay me now or pay me later." if its later, the the state may lose control over what and how much is paid.