Resources for Native Americans with Disabilities: Advocacy

American Indian Choices: Culture and Context


Research and Training Center on Disability in Rural Communities, Montana


Format           Model


When disability programs and services for American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) people are planned and developed, tribal needs are often forgotten or ignored. Although tribal members are eligible for the same services available to others, there are also services specifically tailored to tribal needs.  Most tribes lag far behind in planning, creating, and accessing services for people with disabilities. This project demonstrated the Tribal Disability Actualization Model for American Indian tribes to use when considering disability issues and programs.  This method respects tribal sovereignty and cultural diversity and is consistent with consumer-directed home- and community-based services. The project had three phases: 1) the Tribal Disability Actualization Model was used to consider issues of long-term care and personal care services, 2) selected tribes demonstrated this process to develop and implement policies and programs, and 3) the model was packaged and broadly disseminated.  This model demonstrated methods each American Indian tribe or Alaska Native village could use to understand disability within its own unique social and cultural context.

Contact URL


Contact Agency      

American Indian Disability Technical Assistance Center
The University of Montana Rural Institute: A Center of Excellence
in Disabilities Education, Research and Services
52 Corbin Hall
Missoula, MT 59812-7056

(406) 243-5441



Native American Advocacy Project (NAAP)


Format             Advocacy project     


NAAP is a statewide, non-profit, consumer and family membership organization for people living on and off the nine tribal nations in South Dakota. It is chartered both with the state of South Dakota and the Rosebud Sioux Tribe.  NAAP is committed to providing support to American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) people with all types of disabilities and their family members in system planning, decision-making, networking, advocacy, and service development for these populations. NAAP is also a cross disability organization, meaning that it is inclusive of persons with all types of disabilities, not limiting its efforts to only one or two disability groups but all persons with disabilities. NAAP provides prevention, education and training, advocacy, support, independent living skills and referrals.       


Contact URL


Contact Agency      

Native American Advocacy Project
PO Box 527
208 S Main Street
Winner, SD 57580

605-842-3977 phone/605-842-3983 fax
800-303-3975 toll free
605-842-3977 TTY