The Hawaii Aging and Disability Resource Center (Hawaii ADRC) provides information that may help individuals with disabilities or those with families, caregivers, businesses, and other individuals who interact with persons with disabilities. The information includes definitions of the different types of impairments, laws that apply to persons with disabilities, and resources for persons with disabilities in the State of Hawaii.  Resources are organized by type of service with a brief description of the services the agency provides, and contact information for the agency.


The agencies listed meet the criteria outlined in the Hawaii ADRC inclusion and exclusion policy. The Hawaii ADRC will make every effort to provide complete and accurate information, but it neither guarantees nor makes any representation as to the accuracy or completeness of the information. The user takes full responsibility to further research the services and information listed. 


Please click on the bolded topics below to access information.

Disability Definitions

Disability definitions include:  intellectual, developmental, mental illness and psychiatric disabilities, and hearing, speech, and visual impairments.  

Summaries of the following disability laws are included:  Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, Telecommunications Act of 1996, Fair Housing Act of 1969, as amended in 1988, Air Carrier Access Act of 1986, Voting Accessibility for the Elderly and Handicapped Act of 1984, National Voter Registration Act of 1993, Civil Rights of Institutionalized Persons Act of 1980, Rehabilitation Act (Section 504) of 1973, Rehabilitation Act (Section 508) of 1973, and Architectural Barriers Act of 1968.


Communication Tips

Communication strategies to work with clients who have different types of disabilities.  


Assistive Technology

Assistive technology is any item, piece of equipment, software or product system that is used to increase, maintain, or improve the functional capabilities of persons with disabilities.  Assistive technology includes products and services to help people who have difficulty speaking, typing, writing, remembering, pointing, seeing, hearing, learning, and walking. The agencies listed are able to assess your technology needs and train on the usage of the technology.  


Durable Medical Equipment

Durable Medical Equipment (DME) is any equipment that provides therapeutic benefits to a patient in need because of certain medical conditions and/or illnesses.These agencies will assist persons with disability in determining what equipment is needed, fit the equipment properly, and help with the paperwork for insurance payment based on their physician’s prescription. Some of these vendors also assist travelers with disabilities with equipment rentals while visiting in Hawaii.


Financial Assistance

The agencies listed assist people with obtaining short-term and long-term financial assistance. Review carefully the requirements for each program.


Home and Community Services

The agencies listed assist seniors and individuals with disabilities in determining what services they need to continue living independently at home. Agencies may provide some services at a low cost.

For more information, please contact the Hawaii Aging and Disability Resource Center (ADRC) at 808.643.2372.


Housing Assistance

The agencies listed may help low-income persons with disabilities to find a place to live.  Some of the agencies will also help with financial assistance in paying rent.  


Legal Assistance

The agencies listed will help persons with disabilites with legal issues. If you prefer mediation to resolve your legal issues, there are affordable mediation services available in all four counties.  


There is an Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) coordinator in each County. Please contact the Disability Communications Access Board at 808.586.8121 for contact information.



The agencies listed provide limited medical and dental services to seniors and persons with disabilities who are unable to afford these services.  Please read carefully the eligibility requirements of each program to see if you qualify.


Disability Parking

Parking placards for persons with disabilities identify vehicles with riders and drivers who have mobility impairments that require a disabled parking stall.  The program is statewide and applies to all four Counties. The fines for parking in a reserved handicap parking space without a disabled placard or license plate may be as high as $500.00. 

If you are traveling to Hawaii, please bring your disability parking placard from your home state. Disability parking placards from all U.S. states are recognized in Hawaii and allow you to use designated disability parking while you are visiting Hawaii.

For more information, please contact the Disability and Communication Access Board at 808.586.8121.


Public Transportation

Information on the fixed bus route system and the para-transit system in each County.


Private Pay Taxis

Statewide listing of taxis that accommodate wheelchairs.


Service Animals

This topic has three components.  The first reviews how the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) applies to service animals. The second lists the service providers located in Hawaii who provide service animals.  And the third presents instructions on bringing a service animal to Hawaii.


Support Groups

Support groups play an important role for persons with disabilities, as it provides for a learning environment and gives them the opportunity to meet with other disabled individuals.  This is especially important for newly disabled individuals. Support groups offer social, educational, and advocacy opportunities for persons with disabilities.



This topic includes three sections. The first is information on travel tips published by the State Department of Health, Disability and Communication Access Board.  The second presents links for Hawaii travelers who need assistance travelling outside of Hawaii.  And the last is a list of recreation activities in Hawaii for persons with disabilities.


Other Resources

• State Independent Living Centers (ILC)

Aloha Independent Living Hawaii - Statewide

Access to Independence Oahu - Oahu Only

Signs of Self - Oahu Only; Individuals with Visual and Hearing Impairments


Vacancy Listings for Adult Residential Care Homes and Community Foster Family Homes - Statewide listing

Oahu Detailed Housing Guide (3/2/2015) - Detailed listing of available housing on Oahu.

Long Term Care Ombudsman Program - Investigates and resolves complaints of residents in licensed long term care settings.

Adult Protective Services - How to report elder abuse in the State of Hawaii.

• Fighting Discrimination in Employment Under the ADA - Resources on how to file a complaint of employment discrimination.

U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission - Agency that investigates complaints of discrimination in the workplace.

National Resource Center for Supported Decision Making - Information on an alternative to guardianship.

Kokua Mau - Resources on hospice, palliative care, end-of-life care, POLST, and advance care planning.

Fair Housing Accessibility - Guidance on accessibility for people with disabilities living in private rentals.

ICanConnect - Free communications technology for qualified individuals who have both hearing and vision loss.

Spain, Spain & Varnet - Provides free publications on special needs trust, guardianship, benefits, wills, and trusts. 

Aloha United Way 211 - Information/referrals on everything from crisis intervention to job training, educational programs, and child care.

• Burgdorf, Robert L., Jr. "Why I Wrote the Americans with Disabilities Act." The Washington Post (July 24, 2015).



Last Update:  April 7, 2016