As the Protection and Advocacy agency for North Carolina, we serve 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 we cannot help with because of the requirements of our funding.
We make sure people with disabilities (or their families and advocates) know what their rights are and how to protect those rights. We have resources on a wide range of topics on our Self-Help Tools page. If you do not find the information you need, please contact us.
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 our attorneys helps you advocate for yourself. We can provide you with legal advice, help you write letters and contact the right people.
We take very few individual cases. Instead, we develop strategies to help create change for many people at once. This is called systemic litigation. We take 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.
We monitor facilities where people with disabilities live or receive services to prevent, detect, and address instances of abuse, neglect, or exploitation. Read more.
When we believe serious abuse or neglect may have occurred, we conduct an in-depth investigation and, when necessary, report our findings to state regulatory agencies or law enforcement.
We work 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.
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.
We are 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!