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DRSD not accepting walk in clients at this time...

Monday, March 16, 2020
Please note that starting today, March 16th, Disability Rights SD will not be accepting any walk in clients at our offices due to COVID-19 concerns. We are still open, however, to receive phone calls. So if you are in need of assistance, please contact us at 1-800-658-4782 or 605-342-2575. You may a....
CategoriesAnnouncements, COVID-19

Follow DRSD on our new Twitter page!

Wednesday, February 26, 2020
DRSD is now on Twitter! Follow us @DRSD_Rights to stay up to date on all the latest disability rights news.

DRSD Closed February 17th

Friday, February 14, 2020
Please note: DRSD offices will be closed Monday, February 17th for Presidents' Day. We will be open once again on Tuesday.

Individual/Family and Stakeholder Meetings Coming Up!

Thursday, February 13, 2020


Check out the following message from DHS below for an opportunity to share your opinions on our current services system!


Individual/Family and Stakeholder Meetings


As you are aware, the Department of Human Services has engaged in a broad effort to look at how the state can best serve South Dakota’s I/DD population. Align has been contracted by the DHS to conduct an assessment of the current system of services. Critical to this assessment is the input of individuals in services, families and guardians. We need to hear from you on what is working in the current system, what is not working, and what services or options you think are needed.

Please join us at one of our Family and Stakeholder Meetings to give us your feedback. We will be holding meetings in multiple cities in South Dakota to get as much feedback as possible. Additionally, we will be offering online access to the meeting for Stakeholders who cannot attend in person. We are very excited to have the opportunity to meet with you and gather your opinion and input! We hope to see you at one of the meetings.

There will be meetings on February 18th, 19th, and 20th across the state. See the flyer below for more information:

Flyer with text and links to meetings

SPIL Public Input Survey - Your Opinion Needed!

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

SPIL Public Input Survey


The Statewide Independent Living Council (SILC) is in the process of developing a new 3 year State Plan for Independent Living (IL), and is looking for input on IL services from individuals with disabilities in South Dakota.


Fill out the survey here if you would like to share your opinion and help inform the development of this plan!


Feedback will be accepted through March 6th, 2020. If you would like to receive the survey in an alternative format, please contact 605-773-3195 or email infors@state.sd.us.


National Health Information Survey for Women with Physical Disabilities

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

DRSD Closed Monday, January 20th

Friday, January 17, 2020

Please note that DRSD offices will be closed on Monday, January 20th for Martin Luther King Jr. Day. We will be open once again on Tuesday morning.

WIOA Unified State Plan Public Forums

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

WIOA Unified State Plan Public Forums

There will be two public forums regarding the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) Unified State Plan. More information will be available later, but here is what we know so far.

The first public forum will specifically address the Service to the Blind & Visually Impaired (SBVI) portion of the WIOA Unified State Plan. It will be held on February 3rd at 3PM – 5PM CT in these locations:

·       Aberdeen – DHS office, 1707 4th Ave SE

·       Pierre – DHS office, Hillsview Plaza, 3800 East Highway 34

·       Rapid City – DHS office, 2330 N. Maple Ave

·       Sioux Falls – Rehabilitation Center for the Blind, 2900 West 11th Street, Suite 101

The second forum will address the full WIOA Unified State Plan. It will be held on February 6th from 10AM-12PM CT at:

·       Aberdeen – DHS office, 1707 4th Ave SE.

·       Brookings – DHS/DLR office, 1310 Main Avenue South

·       Huron – DHS/DLR Office   2361 Dakota Avenue South

·       Mitchell – DHS/DLR Office 1321 N. Main

·       Pierre – DHS office, Hillsview Plaza, 3800 East Highway 34

·       Rapid City – DHS/DLR office, 2330 N. Maple Ave

·       Sioux Falls – DHS/DLR office 811 E 10th Street

·       Spearfish – DHS/DLR Office 1300 North Ave

·       Watertown – DHS/DLR Office 2001 9th Ave SW

·       Yankton – DHS/DLR Office 3113 Spruce

There will also be an option to call in to both forums by calling 866-410-8397. The Conference Code is 2265385751.

To see a draft of the plan and learn more, visit https://dhs.sd.gov/wioa.aspx.

Census 2020 - What do you need to know?

Thursday, January 9, 2020

Census 2020 – What do you need to know?

Every ten years, the United States conducts a census to count every person living in America. The 2020 Census is coming up fast—in fact, Alaska is starting its count later this month! The census is important because its data is used to determine how many seats each state will receive in Congress, and it guides the distribution of more than $675 billion in federal funds to community schools, hospitals, and other programs. The census provides crucial information that will help shape the future of communities across the nation.

It is super important, therefore, that the census is fair and accurate—everyone should be counted! According to the U.S. Census Bureau, however, people with disabilities are classified as a "hard-to-count population.” Unfortunately, this means that individuals with disabilities are at a greater risk of being undercounted in this year’s census.

So, what do you need to know to make sure that you and your loved ones are counted this year?

First, you should know that the 2020 Census will be accessible for everyone! Most households will be invited to participate in the census using an online form. However, there are other options as well. You can complete the 2020 Census in the following ways:


The online form should meet all the latest web accessibility guidelines, meaning individuals will be able to go through census materials online without a mouse and by using assistive technologies. There will also be a video guide in American Sign Language available.


Laptop by Tomi Triyana from the Noun ProjectPhone:

There will also be an option to self-respond to the census by phone in English and 12 additional languages. Additionally, you will also be able to respond using Telephone Device for the Deaf (TDD/TTY) technology. 



 The Census Bureau will provide Braille and large print guides to assist individuals who would like to fill out paper questionnaires. These guides will be available on the Census Bureau’s website and will also be distributed at many partner events, conferences, and meetings.

Additionally, if you live in a health care facility or another group living situation, you will be counted as part of the Group Quarters Operation. If you would like to know more about this, there are several great fact sheets available at this website:


The count will officially start on January 21, 2020 in Alaska. Other parts of the nation will begin to receive instruction letters in the middle of March. If people do not respond to the census by the end of April, someone will follow up with them in-person between May-July.

Together, we can make sure that everyone is counted during this year’s census.

To learn more about the 2020 Census, check out the following resources: 


Accessible Census Factsheet

Fact Sheet on Census Accessibility


Anniversary of the Willowbrook State School Exposé

Monday, January 6, 2020

Anniversary of the Willowbrook State School Exposé 

Shows image of the Willowbrook State School

(Willowbrook State School, New York Public Library)

On this day in 1972, an investigative news report by Geraldo Rivera titled, “Willowbrook: The Last Disgrace,” was aired on local news stations in New York. This broadcast displayed horrible living conditions and exposed several instances of abuse and neglect at a state institution for people with developmental disabilities called Willowbrook. The program included heartbreaking scenes of severely mistreated individuals in an overcrowded facility, shocking viewers across the nation.

It was this broadcast that persuaded New York’s senior senator, Jacob Javits, to incorporate a Protection and Advocacy System in federal legislation, leading to the development of P&A agencies that exist across our nation today—this includes our very own Disability Rights South Dakota. Therefore, on the anniversary of this groundbreaking exposé, DRSD is reminded of just how important it is to continuously protect and advocate for disability rights in our community.

To view a clip from the original documentary, visit this websiteTo learn more about the P&A System, check out this video here.


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This site offers legal information from a variety of sources. South Dakota Advocacy Services makes every effort to ensure the accuracy of the information. This site is not intended to provide legal advice - the application of the law to your individual circumstances. For legal advice, you should consult an attorney.