What is the CAP Program?
The Client Assistance Program at University Legal Services (“CAP-ULS”) is federally funded by the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 to identify, explain, and advocate to resolve the complaints and problems an individual may be having in receiving or applying for vocational rehabilitation services from the District of Columbia Rehabilitation Services Administration (‘DCRSA”) and other providers of services under the Act. CAP-ULS is authorized to pursue legal, administrative and other appropriate remedies to ensure the protection of rights of individuals with disabilities who are receiving vocational rehabilitation services. What Services does DCRSA Provide?
What Services does DCRSA Provide?
DCRSA provides vocational and rehabilitative services to people with disabilities with disabilities to help them prepare for, secure, regain or retain employment. Vocational rehabilitation services are meant to reduce or remove barriers to employment faced by people with disabilities. They provide a wide range of services, some examples are: information and referral, assessment services, counseling and guidance, physical restoration, vocational training or other post-secondary education, job search, job placement and job coaching, and supported employment.
To be eligible for DCRSA’s services, a person must have:
- a physical or mental impairment that is a substantial impediment to employment;
- be able to benefit from vocational rehabilitation services in terms of employment;
- and require vocational rehabilitation services to prepare for, enter, engage in, or retain employment.
Priority is given to those individuals who have the most significant disabilities. Once eligibility is established, a VR counselor assists the person to develop an Individualized Plan for Employment (IPE). The IPE identifies the vocational goal and the services that will be provided in order to achieve that goal. All DCRSA services must be tied to a vocational goal.
Important timelines to remember:
How Can CAP-ULS Help You?
CAP-ULS can provide the following services:
Explain the services and benefits available to you from DCRSA Refer you to other public or private agencies that may be able to help you if you are not eligible for DCRSA’s services
Advise you of your rights and responsibilities under the Rehabilitation Act Help you to resolve problems or complaints you may have with DCRSA through informal means (i.e., meeting with counselor, speaking with supervisor)
Help you through the appeal process. Depending on your specific situation and our resources at the time, CAP-ULS will either assist you in the appeal process or provide further information for you to represent yourself in the appeal process.
You have the right to appeal in many situations such as:
- When you have been found ineligible for DCRSA services
- When you believe your case is about to be or has been closed incorrectly
- When you do not agree with the decisions made by your DCRSA counselor
- When there has been unreasonable delay in developing and/or implementing your IPE
- When you believe your rights have been violated
When Should I Contact CAP-ULS?
You should contact CAP-ULS if you:
- Have any questions regarding the services and benefits available from DCRSA
- Are experiencing an undue delay in the processing of an application for services
- Have been denied eligibility and do not agree with the denial
- Experience a undue delay in the development (more than 90 days) of your IPE
- Have been denied services to which you feel you are entitled
- Are experiencing an undue delay in the implementation of your IPE
- Are experiencing an undue delay in the amendment of your IPE for the next period
- Believe a vocational rehabilitation provider is not meeting your needs
- Have problems that you and your DCRSA counselor did not resolve
- Have problems that are preventing you from reaching your vocational goals
- Do not agree when DCRSA seeks to close you case
Please contact CAP-ULS as soon as the negative incident or decision occurs.
There may be timelines/deadlines associated with the issue that might prevent you from seeking a resolution if you wait.
How Do I Contact CAP-ULS?
To request assistance, call (202) 547-0198 (voice) or (202) 547-2657 (tty) and ask to speak to our Intake Specialist. CAP-ULS’ office is located at 220 I Street, N.E., Suite 130, Washington, D.C. 20002.
What If I am Unsatisfied with CAP-ULS Services?
ULS-CAP makes every effort to provide effective rights-related advocacy for meritorious cases. However, if any individual is not satisfied with CAP's actions, he or she has the right to file a grievance to the Executive Director of ULS. You can submit your grievance in writing to the Executive Director. A client may also lodge an oral grievance with a ULS staff member who shall put the grievance in writing and submit it to the Executive Director.
The Executive Director may be reached at:
Jane Brown, Executive Director
University Legal Services
220 I Street, N.E., Suite 130
Washington, D.C. 20002
(202) 547-0198 Phone
(202) 547-2662 Fax
(202) 547-2657 TTY
The Executive Director shall respond in writing within thirty (30) days of receipt of a grievance from any client or prospective client, or community member who has an interest in the operation of the protection and advocacy program. A grievant may appeal the Executive Director’s decision to the ULS Board of Directors within ten (10) days of the written decision of the Executive Director. The decision of the ULS Board of Directors shall be final and not subject to further appeal or review. Client confidentiality shall be maintained. The Executive Director shall report grievances to the Board of Directors annually.