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  • The National Council on Disability (NCD) is an independent federal agency making recommendations to the President and Congress to enhance the quality of life for all Americans with disabilities and their families. NCD is composed of 15 members appointed by the President and confirmed by the U.S. Senate. In its 1986 report Toward Independence, NCD first proposed that Congress should enact a civil rights law for people with disabilities. In 1990, the Americans with Disabilities Act was signed into law.

    NCD's overall purpose is to promote policies, programs, practices, and procedures that guarantee equal opportunity for all individuals with disabilities, regardless of the nature or severity of the disability; and to empower individuals with disabilities to achieve economic self-sufficiency, independent living, and inclusion and integration into all aspects of society.

    NCD is currently working on a series of reports known as Investing in Independence, which interrelate with centerpiece initiatives presented in President Bush's New Freedom Initiative. These reports focus on transitioning people from Social Security income to work, long term supports and services, the impact of the Americans with Disabilities Act, and financial incentives related to employment and living independently.