As the Protection and Advocacy agency for North Carolina, DRNC serves the whole state. We offer information and referral to residents with disabilities. We also offer free legal services. These services are provided to people who need help because of their disability. There are certain issues that DRNC cannot help with.
Information and Referral
DRNC makes sure people with disabilities (or their families and advocates) know what their rights are and how to protect those rights. You can find information, resources and sample letters on a wide range of topics on our resources page. If you do not find the information you need, please contact us. Learn more about getting help protecting your rights
There are many ways to resolve a problem and not every issue can best be fixed with legal representation. Sometimes giving the right information to the right people can help you get what you need more quickly. Self-advocacy assistance is when one of DRNC’s attorneys or advocates helps you advocate for yourself. We can provide you with legal advice, help you write letters and contact the right people. Check out our online resource library to find the information and tools you need to advocate for yourself or another.
DRNC takes very few individual cases. Instead, we develop strategies to help create change for many people at once. This is called systemic litigation. DRNC takes cases that have the potential to change state laws and policies, and improve the lives of many people with disabilities. For example, we may pursue a case that will improve education for children with disabilities in an entire school system, not just one classroom.
We also pursue cases that could change how the State of North Carolina provides support to people with disabilities. Because we are a nonprofit agency independent from the state government, we can and do file lawsuits against the State to protect the rights of people with disabilities. See some examples of past cases and complaints.
We provide assistance to attorneys, social workers, advocates and other organizations who are working with individuals with disabilities.
DRNC monitors facilities where people with disabilities live or receive services to prevent, detect, and address instances of abuse, neglect, or exploitation.
When we believe serious abuse or neglect may have occurred, DRNC conducts an in-depth investigation and, when necessary, report our findings to state regulatory agencies or law enforcement.
Public Policy Advocacy
DRNC works to improve laws and regulations so they better serve people with disabilities. We advocate for funding of public benefits programs to make sure people with disabilities receive the services they need. Learn more about our public policy advocacy.
Outreach and Training
We offer training to educate people about their rights, and to provide information to the community and other attorneys so that they can train and educate others. Check our calendar of events for upcoming or past trainings.
DRNC is partially funded through federal grants. The federal P&A grants require us to work in specific issue areas. These areas are outlined by our Advocacy Targets.
Additional work, such as outreach, training, creating materials and public policy advocacy are funded are funded through private grants and donations. To help support this work, make a donation!