National Research Center for Parents with Disabilities

The National Research Center for Parents with Disabilities conducts research and provides training and technical assistance to improve the lives of parents with disabilities and their families. We share our findings here on this website.

We offer information sheets, research briefs, and other resources for parents with disabilities, legal professionals, social workers, and researchers. These resources cover a variety of topics, including child-welfare law and its effects on parents with disabilities, firsthand narratives from parents with disabilities about how they raise their children, and advice for professionals working with specific populations of parents with disabilities.   

The Center for Parents recognizes that parents with disabilities know what they need. We are guided by the principle "nothing about us without us."

In the News

Photograph of US Supreme Court next to a quotation by Robyn M. Powell: "[I]t is actual disabled people — not hypothetical fetuses with disability diagnoses — who abortion restrictions will harm."NRCPD Researcher's Analysis of Disabled People's Needs for Abortion Access Now Available

NRCPD and Lurie Institute researcher Robyn Powell's timely analysis will be published in an upcoming issue of UCLA Law Review. It is currently available as a work-in-progress.

Read the work in progress

Monika Mitra, Lurie Institute Director

Disabled mothers-to-be face indignity‘ Do you have a man? Can you have sex?’

Lurie Institute Director Monika Mitra and the National Center for Parents with Disabilities are highlighted in story on disabled parents. Although disabled women have children at the same rate as nondisabled women, Mitra notes that "[t]he assumption is that a person cannot have a disability and take care of someone else." When Mitra began investigating pregnancy and perinatal issues facing people with disabilities, she was surprised by the lack of information and data available.

 

ParentingWell Learning Collaborative

Massachusetts Behavioral Health Providers are participating in the ParentingWell Learning Collaborative

ParentingWell® is an approach to routine practice that makes talking about parenting, children, and family experiences a natural part of the conversation and of an adult’s recovery process. 

Learn more about the ParentingWell Practice Profile

 

Upcoming & Recent

Go to: Upcoming WebinarsPast Webinars

Webinar Banner: Disabled Parents in the NICU

Upcoming Webinar: Disabled Parents in the NICU

On June 7, 2022 at noon, we will be presenting a webinar featuring two disabled parent panelists whose babies were born prematurely and were admitted to the NICU. Read full description.

New Brief: Parent-Centered Planning

Researchers present a model focused on parents for use by formal services systems, which often don’t acknowledge that adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities are increasingly becoming parents.

Webinar: Black, Disabled, Deaf, & Proud

On March 30, 2022, we presented a webinar on Black, Disabled, Deaf, & Proud. Access the webinar recording.

New Brief: Who Reports Parents with Intellectual Disabilities to the Child Welfare System?

Parents with intellectual disabilities are reported to the child welfare system at very high rates. Center for Parents researchers studied how parents with intellectual disabilities become involved with the child protection system.

Current State Legislation Supporting Parents with Disabilities

Despite notable achievements in other areas of disability rights, parents with disabilities continue to encounter significant discrimination. Parents with disabilities are more likely to have their children removed by the child welfare system as well as have their parental rights terminated. Moreover, within the family law system, disabled parents are less likely to gain access to custody or visitation of their children. Finally, prospective parents with disabilities encounter barriers to adopting children or becoming foster parents. While there are many reasons for the pervasive discrimination, it is notable that the child welfare, family law, and adoption systems are largely driven by state statutes.

Go to Interactive Map | Go to Legal Guidance | Go to Summary of State Legislation

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