Each year, DRNC creates a plan to address the greatest threats to the independence of people with disabilities and the most prevalent violations of disability rights laws. The plan includes a set of advocacy goals that we call Targets.
We do not have the resources necessary to address all of the many issues facing people with disabilities. So we work with the disability community to identify the legal problems that are the most pressing, widespread or that no one else is equipped to address. Then we develop Targets to address those problems. Targets guide the work of our legal teams and provide the structure for how we spend our limited resources.
DRNC’s Advocacy Targets for Fiscal Year 2021
- Keep students with disabilities in school.
- Ensure students with disabilities will attend school free from abuse, including abusive interventions.
- Advocate for the employment of people with disabilities in competitive and integrated jobs.
- Enforce the right of people with disabilities to have equal access to their community.
- Reduce North Carolina’s over-reliance on private residential treatment facilities (PRTFs).
- Reduce unnecessary institutionalization of individuals with disabilities and advance home and community based healthcare services and supports.
- Protect the housing rights of people with disabilities under both federal and state law.
- Prepare, advise, and advocate for people with disabilities before, during, and after a state declared disaster/pandemic.
- Advocate for safe, equitable and just criminal processes for people with disabilities
- Promote the right of self-determination.
- Enforce the right of people with disabilities to vote.
Does DRNC Do Work Outside of the Targets?
Yes. Targets are required by some of the federal Protection & Advocacy grants we receive. We also do other kinds of work.
Monitoring and Investigations
As the Protection & Advocacy organization for North Carolina, DRNC is federally mandated and empowered to conduct monitoring and investigations in facilities where people with disabilities live and receive services. We work to keep them free from abuse and neglect. This has been and always will be a critical part of DRNC’s efforts. Within our resources and priorities, we will:
- Monitor various types of facilities to identify, prevent and remedy instances of abuse and neglect against people with disabilities, and keep them safe;
- Ensure legal compliance, safe conditions, and appropriate services;
- Identify individuals who could live in the community with supports;
- Investigate deaths and allegations of abuse or neglect in facilities;
- Advocate for systemic reforms.
Information and Referral
Another important part of the work we do at DRNC is to support self-advocacy among people with disabilities. Throughout the year, we conduct outreach, and provide training and self-advocacy tools to help people with disabilities learn about and enforce their rights.
Public Policy Advocacy
We also engage in public policy advocacy with funds we are able to raise outside our grants. Click here to learn how you can support our work.