The housing crisis strands many with disabilities in nursing homes. A lawsuit wants to change that.

A federal class-action lawsuit intends to highlight and rectify how people with disabilities are being housed in nursing homes without proper resources or plans to transition them to appropriate settings, radio station GBH News reported Jan. 26.

John Simmons, a plaintiff in the lawsuit, which was filed in October, found himself stuck in a nursing home after being released from a hospital three years ago. His lawsuit alleges that the state of Massachusetts allows thousands of people with disabilities to deteriorate in nursing facilities despite their ability to live independently. It seeks to compel the state to expand and set up programs that will help people with disabilities transition out of nursing homes.

"It's considered a violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act to unnecessarily keep people with disabilities warehoused in institutional settings when people could safely live in a more integrated setting in the community," Deborah Filler, an attorney with Greater Boston Legal Services, which represents the plaintiffs, told GBH News.

GBH News reached out to the secretary of Massachusetts Office of Health and Human Services, who is named as a defendant in the lawsuit. The agency declined to comment.

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