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Advancing the Human & Civil Rights of People with Disabilities in Illinois



How we protect people from abuse and neglectMan sitting in fetal position in the corner

We help people with disabilities by visiting places where they receive services. We are able to:

  • Access programs and facilities at reasonable times to provide information about our services
  • Meet with people receiving services
  • Meet with staff
  • Ensure protection of individual rights
  • Observe all areas where people receiving services have access
  • Obtain reports related to abuse and neglect investigations, quality assurance, and licensure
  • Obtain reports related to restraint and seclusion
  • Obtain records related to people who have died

We use the following techniques and activities to protect people:

  • Engage in unannounced visits to facilities to find whether there are dangerous conditions or practices and fundamental rights violations
  • Perform secondary investigations that examine the findings and recommendations of state and federal investigators
  • Investigate deaths and serious incidents; make recommendations to address identified problems
  • Collaborate with public investigators
  • Share findings and recommendations with state agencies, service providers and the public

How we protect people’s rights to safety and quality of care

We provide advocacy and legal services to help make sure that people with disabilities are safe, receive high-quality care and have their rights enforced. To do this, we:

  • Address the underlying causes of abuse, neglect and exploitation
  • Ensure people’s access to appropriate services
  • Challenge restrictions placed on individual rights
  • Help people begin state and federal investigations
  • Compel action by state agencies and service providers
  • Ensure access to the justice system


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Last updated: January 07, 2016

This website is made possible by funding support from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, both the Administration on Developmental Disabilities and the Center for Mental Health Services of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration; and the U.S. Department of Education, the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services. The contents of this website are solely the responsibility of Equip for Equality and do not necessarily represent the official view of any of these agencies.

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