Protection & Advocacy for Developmental Disabilities (DD)
After becoming aware of the inhumane conditions at Willowbrook, a New York State institution for persons with developmental disabilities, Congress enacted the Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Act of 1975 (the "DD Act"). In the DD Act, Congress recognized that a federally directed system of legal advocacy was necessary to "ensure the humane care, treatment, habilitation and protection of mentally retarded and other persons with developmental disabilities." Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Act, as amended. ( 42 U.S.C. §§ 15041-15045 )
The DD Act created a system of protection and advocacy agencies in all states and territories. In 1977, the Protection & Advocacy Project (P&A) was established as the designated protection and advocacy agency for North Dakota.
Protection & Advocacy for Individuals with Mental Illness (PAIMI)
Following Congressional investigations substantiating reports of abuse and neglect in state psychiatric hospitals, the Protection & Advocacy for Individuals with Mental Illness Act of 1986 (the "PAIMI Act") was passed. The PAIMI Act's intent was to extend protections similar to those provided under the DD Act to individuals with mental illness residing in facilities. Protection and Advocacy for Individuals with Mental Illness Act, as amended. (42 U.S.C. §§ 10801 - 10807, 42 U.S.C. §§ 10821 - 10827, 42 U.S.C. §§ 10841, 42 U.S.C. §§ 10851)
An important provision for the protection and advocacy system was included in the Children's Health Act of 2000. It expanded the PAIMI Program to cover individuals with mental illness who reside in the community.
Protection & Advocacy for Individual Rights (PAIR)
The Protection & Advocacy for Individual Rights (PAIR) Program was established under the Rehabilitation Act in 1973, as amended in 1992. The program was not fully funded by Congress until 1994 which is when it was established in North Dakota. It is designed to serve individuals with disabilities who are not eligible for P&A services under the DD or PAIMI programs. Section 509 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended. (29 U.S.C. §§ 794e)
Protection & Advocacy for Assistive Technology (AT)
The Protection & Advocacy for Assistive Technology (AT) Program was established in 1994 when the Technology-Related Assistance for Individuals with Disabilities Act (the "Tech Act") was expanded by Congress. As a result, the Tech Act includes funding to the protection and advocacy system to assist individuals with disabilities in accessing AT devices & services. Technology-Related Assistance for Individuals with Disabilities Act, as amended. (29 U.S.C. §§ 3004)
Protection & Advocacy for Beneficiaries of Social Security (PABSS)
The Protection & Advocacy for Beneficiaries of Social Security (PABSS) Program was established and authorized by the Ticket to Work and Work Incentive Improvement Act (TWWIIA) of 1999. The Act authorized the Social Security Administration (SSA) to fund protection and advocacy systems to provide work incentive assistance to SSDI and SSI beneficiaries who need vocational rehabilitation, employment services, and other supports to secure or regain employment. In North Dakota, the program was established in 2001. Section 1150 of the Social Security Act, added by the Ticket to Work and Work Incentives Improvement Act, as amended. (42 U.S.C. §§ 1320b-21)
Protection & Advocacy for Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
This program was authorized by the Traumatic Brain Injury Act of 1996 and reauthorized as part of the Children's Health Act of 2000. Through the funding provided, protection and advocacy systems are better able to serve individuals with traumatic brain injury and their families. This program was initiated in North Dakota in 2002. Section 1253 of the Public Health Service Act, added by the Children's Health Act, as amended. (42 U.S.C. §§ 300d-53)
Protection & Advocacy for Voting Access (PAVA)
This program was enacted to help ensure that every qualified person with a disability has the opportunity to vote. The Help American Vote Act, which was signed into law on October 29, 2002, overhauled federal elections in the United States by establishing minimum voting standards that each state and territory must follow. The Act also authorizes the provision of funds to the protection and advocacy system to ensure full participation in the electoral process for individuals with disabilities. Title II, Subtitle D of the Help America Vote Act of 2002. (52 U.S.C. §§ 21061-21062)
Client Assistance Program (CAP)
The Client Assistance Program (CAP) was initiated as a pilot project in North Dakota in 1974. In 1984, the Governor designated the Vocational Rehabilitation Division of the Department of Human Services (DHS) to formally administer the federal program. In July 2011, DHS began contracting the CAP to P&A for implementation in North Dakota.
The goals of the CAP are: (1) to provide assistance in informing and advising clients and client applicants of available benefits under the Rehabilitation Act; (2) to assist and advocate for clients and client applicants in their relationships with projects, programs and services provided under this Act, including assistance and advocacy in pursuing legal, administrative and other appropriate remedies; (3) to provide information on available services under the Act and Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act to any individual with disabilities in the State. The CAP is established under the Rehabilitation Act, as amended. (29 U.S.C. § 732)
Protection & Advocacy for Beneficiaries with Representative Payees (PABRP)
A representative payee is a person who receives Social Security Disability or Supplemental Security Income on behalf of a person (beneficiary) who is not able to manage their own benefits. The Representative Payee is to use benefits to meet the needs of the beneficiary of these monies. Investigations have uncovered representative payees who have stolen or misused funds, exploited, neglected and even abused the people with disabilities they were supposed to be helping. On April 13, 2018, the Strengthening Protections for Social Security Beneficiaries Act of 2018 (P.L. 115–165) was signed in to law. The law amends Titles II, VIII, and XVI of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. Chapter 7) and establishes an annual grant to the Protection and Advocacy System in each state to conduct reviews of individuals and organizations acting as representative payees. This program strengthens protections by increasing the number of performance reviews conducted, requiring additional types of reviews, and improving the effectiveness of reviews by ensuring independent reviewers skilled in recognizing abuse, neglect and exploitation are engaged in oversight of the Social Security Administration’s Representative Payee Program.