As encouraged by federal funding sources, and following input activities by people with disabilities, family members and the public, each year P&A chooses some of the most important issues affecting people with disabilities and makes them priorities. Nearly all P&A services (including information & referral, client assistance & representation, education & training, and systems advocacy) are then focused on these priority issues. P&A annually completes federal reports that detail progress and achievements made on each program’s priorities; these reports are available to the public upon request.
P&A may accept non-priority cases for advocacy assistance, advocacy representation, or legal representation when the presenting issue is considered to be egregious and all other criteria have been met. Very limited resources will be available for non-priority cases. P&A's grievance procedure is available to individuals whose request for advocacy services has been turned down because the issue is not within existing priorities or for other reasons.
Goals & Priorities Fiscal Year 2023
Goal 1: Abuse, Neglect, & Exploitation
Eligible individuals will be free from abuse, neglect, and exploitation.
- Investigate, or cause to investigate, suspected abuse, neglect, and exploitation of eligible individuals. (DD, MH, PAIR, TBI)
- May conduct monitoring of service providers to ensure compliance with mandatory reporting and ensure quality services for eligible individuals. (DD, MH, PAIR, TBI)
- Conduct reviews of individuals and organizations regarding Representative Payee services for eligible individuals. (RP)
- Provide education, engage in collaboration with partners, and strive for systems change to address abuse, neglect, and exploitation of eligible individuals. (DD, MH, PAIR, TBI, RP)
Goal 2: Community Inclusion
Eligible individuals will receive treatment, services, and supports to meaningfully contribute and participate in the communities where they live, learn, work, and play.
- Inclusion – Advocate for eligible individuals to access services and support to promote community living. (DD, MH, TBI)
- Education – Advocate for educational rights for eligible individuals in the areas of least restrictive environment, positive behavioral supports, elimination of seclusion and restraints, use of shortened school days, and denial of 504 disability-related accommodations that risk health and safety. (DD, MH, PAIR, TBI)
- Healthcare – Pursue denials of medically necessary disability-related healthcare coverage. (PAIR)
- Employment – Address barriers to employment by advocating for reasonable accommodations, transition services and plans, employment discrimination, and dissatisfaction or denial of employment-related services. (PABSS, CAP)
- Assistive Tech – Address inappropriate denials of disability-related Assistive Technology supports in community, educational, and employment settings. (AT)
- Voting – Ensure that eligible individuals have full access to the electoral process. (PAVA)
- Provide education, engage in collaboration with partners, and strive for systems change to promote community inclusion in all aspect of life. (DD, MH, PAIR, TBI, AT, PABSS, CAP, PAVA)
Goal 3: Criminal/Juvenile Justice
The disability/mental health related rights of eligible individuals will be protected and enforced.
- Represent eligible individuals at forced medication hearings within the prison system. (MH)
- Advocate for eligible youth who are involved or at-risk of being involved in the juvenile justice system due to mental illness. (MH)
- Ensure that eligible individuals have mental illness related treatment and supports in correctional facilities. (MH)
- Provide education, collaborate with partners, and strive for systems change to ensure the justice system appropriately recognizes the disability/mental health-related rights and promotes appropriate treatment and supports for eligible individuals. (DD, MH, PAIR, TBI)
DD = Protection & Advocacy for Developmental Disabilities
MH = Protection & Advocacy for Individuals with Mental Illness
PAIR = Protection & Advocacy for Individual Rights
TBI = Protection & Advocacy for Traumatic Brain Injury
AT = Protection & Advocacy for Assistive Technology
PAVA = Protection & Advocacy for Voting Access
PABSS = Protection & Advocacy for Beneficiaries of Social Security
CAP = Client Assistance Program
RP = Protection & Advocacy for Beneficiaries with Representative Payees