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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.


Happy New Year From DRSD!

Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Happy New Year from all of us at Disability Rights South Dakota! Please note that our offices will be closed on Wednesday, January 1st in observance of the holiday. We will be open once again on Thursday morning.

Holiday Hours - Closed December 23rd - 27th

Friday, December 20, 2019

Happy holidays from all of us at Disability Rights South Dakota! Please note that our offices will be closed all of next week from Monday, December 23rd - Friday, December 27th. We will reopen once again on Monday, December 30th at 8 AM.  

Upcoming Events

Monday, December 2, 2019

Upcoming Events

Coming up soon...


December 2nd, 2019

Alternatives to Guardianship/Adult Agency Meet & Greet

Watertown, County Fair Hall

Monday December 2nd from 5:00pm-7:30pm


Learn about alternatives to guardianship and other options for young adults at this transition forum event. Dinner will be provided!

See the flyer below for more details and to learn how to register. 


December 4th, 2019

Get the School Year Back on Track: Strategies for Overcoming Your Student’s Toughest Daily Challenges

Free Webinar

December 4th, 2019 at 12pm CT/11am MT

Learn more and register here.


December 7th, 2019

Cookies & Cocoa Holiday Event

Sioux Falls, Museum of Visual Materials

December 7th, 2019 at 10:30am-12:30pm

It's almost time for the holidays! Get in the festive spirit by attending this free event hosted by South Dakota Parent Connection.

December 9th, 2019

Charting the LifeCourse to Plan a Good Life

Free Interactive Workshop - K.O. Lee Public Library - 215 4th Ave SE, Aberdeen

December 9th, 2019

*Must register to attend.

December 10th, 2019

Lunch and Learn Education Session

Webinar/Sioux Falls

December 10th, 2019 at 12 PM CT/11 AM MT


December 12th, 2019

Sensory Friendly Santa Event

K.O. Lee Public Library - 215 4th Ave SE, Aberdeen

December 12th, 2019 6:00-7:00 PM



We will be closed for staff training - 12/2 (Afternoon) & 12/3 (Morning)

Monday, December 2, 2019


Please note that our offices will be closed tomorrow afternoon and Wednesday morning for a staff training. Please see our updated hours:


Tuesday, 12/2: Open 8AM - 12PM, Closed 12PM - 5PM
Wednesday, 12/3: Closed 8AM - 1PM, Open 1PM - 5PM


Closed for Thanksgiving - November 28th & 29th, 2019

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

DRSD offices will be closed on November 28th and 29th in observance of the Thanksgiving holiday. We hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Upcoming Events in the Community

Wednesday, November 20, 2019
There are tons of cool events happening in South Dakota over the next couple of weeks! Click on this post for a list of upcoming events that you might be interested in attending.

Alternatives to Guardianship Event

Monday, November 18, 2019


Attention Watertown residents! Learn about alternatives to guardianship and other options for young adults at this transition forum event. Dinner is provided! 


Date: Monday, December 2nd

Time: 5:00-7:30pm

Location: County Fair Banquet Hall. 14 2nd St. NE, Watertown


Register by Wednesday, November 27th to attend. 



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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.