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Human Rights Advisory Committee

The Office of Rights and Advocacy (ORA) oversees the Human Rights Advisory Committee (HRAC). HRAC is tasked with ensuring that providers are using best practices in protecting the human, civil and legal rights of people receiving services through the DDA service delivery system.  In addition, the HRAC reviews and resolves all allegations of violations of a person’s rights consistent with DDS policy and procedures. The HRAC responsibilities are outlined below.

  1. HRAC shall review any human rights violations arising from the DDS Rights and Advocacy Specialist’s (RAS) review of provider Human Rights Committee (HRC) meeting minutes, or requested by a person, provider, service coordinator, family member, or other concerned party, including systemic issues that affect people served by DDA. HRAC shall also review issues and concerns brought by people served by DDA, DDA staff, provider staff and administrators, parents or advocates that involve potential violations of people’s rights.
  2. HRAC shall review all proposed: nursing facility placements; placements in long term acute care (LTAC); placements in large institutions (defined as having seven or more people); and placements of people who live outside of a 25 mile radius of the District of Columbia. HRAC shall routinely review those continued placements to ensure that the person is in the least restrictive and most appropriate settings to meet his or her needs. Reviews of placements outside of a 25 mile radius of the District of Columbia shall occur at least annually, following review by the person’s support team as part of the person’s Individual Support Plan process. All other reviews regarding placements will occur at least quarterly, and more frequently as determined by the HRAC, or upon request of the person or any member of his or her Support Team.
  3. HRAC members are responsible for attending any required trainings, staying abreast of and following all DDA policies and procedures pertaining to human rights and for reviewing HRAC packets prior to the meeting.
  4. HRAC members will maintain the confidentiality of the people being reviewed and the contents of the review packet.
  5. Committee members shall actively support people who attend meetings to discuss their rights concerns. Additionally, the DDA Service Coordinator for the person reviewed shall be invited to attend HRAC meetings and shall participate in the meeting, either in person or by phone. If the Service Coordinator is not available, he or she must work with his or her supervisor to have someone at the meeting who can represent service coordination and has knowledge of the person.
  6. HRAC members shall identify any areas of potential conflict and recuse themselves for that particular decision.
  7. HRAC shall identify any systemic issues that arise for providers, DDA, and/or other government agencies and make specific outcome-driven recommendations for corrective action for people, provider or systemic improvements to the DDS Deputy Director for DDA or DDS Director as appropriate.

Additional HRAC Information

Further details regarding the Human Rights Advisory Committee can be found by emailing the Rights and Advocacy Specialist at [email protected]