Office of Protection and Advocacy for Persons with Disabilities

{P & A Citizenship Justice Belonging}

Welcome to the internet site of the Office of Protection and Advocacy for Persons with Disabilities (better known as OPA or simply "P&A").  P&A is an independent State agency created to safeguard and advance the civil and human rights of people with disabilities in Connecticut.  Part of a nationwide network of protection and advocacy systems, the Office operates under both State and federal legislative mandates to:
  • provide information, referral, and advocacy services; 
  • pursue legal and administrative remedies on behalf of people with disabilities who experience disability-related discrimination; 
  • investigate allegations of abuse and neglect that arise in specific service settings or that affect individuals with particular disabilities; and, 
  • provide education, information and training on disability rights to policy makers, advocacy groups and members of the public.

Latest News
Tuesday, February 14, 2017
Legislative Update
  Updates on legislative issues affecting people with disabilities.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017
Public Hearing Notice
  Notice of Public Hearing and Request for Public Comment regarding the Redesignation of Connecticut's Protection and Advocacy System for Persons with Disabilities.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017
  Federal law requires the Governor to designate a state or private agency as the P&A/CAP and provide assurances to the federal government that the agency, among other things, has the authority to seek legal, administrative and other appropriate remedies, including remedies against the state, to ensure the protection of the rights of individuals with disabilities in the state, and is independent of any agency that provides treatment, services, or rehabilitation to individuals under the Rehabilitation Act. The designation may be removed (re-designated) only for good cause.

Tuesday, January 03, 2017
U.S.D.O.J. Press Release
  U.S.D.O.J. entered into agreement which ensures effective communication with hearing impaired individuals at John Dempsey Hospital. According to the complainant, she was forced to rely on her boyfriendís limited ability to interpret her symptoms during the medical examination because her request for an ASL interpreter was denied by hospital staff. Within two days after discharge, the complainantís symptoms had escalated, and she ultimately had an emergency appendectomy at another hospital because her appendix had burst.

Tuesday, December 27, 2016
P&A 2016 Annual Report
  Why Celebrate 39 years? Are you asking yourself why P&A is celebrating 39 years? Why not wait until 40? What is so great about 39 years? The short answer is that P&A is closing in June 2017 and will not see its 40th anniversary. The longer answer is that state of Connecticut has decided to close the agency due to economic realities and possible loss of federal funding. However, Public Act 16-66 transfers the Abuse Investigation Division to the Department of Rehabilitation Services and the advocacy functions to a newly designated non-profit entity.

Monday, December 19, 2016
PAIMI Advisory Council Priorities and Objectives - 2017
  The PAIMI Advisory Council has determined itís priorities for the 2017 fiscal year. The priorities are based on activities from the previous year and information synthesized from calls and cases during the 2016 fiscal year. The priorities are abbreviated in consideration for the closure of the current Office of Protection and Advocacy for Persons with Disabilities and the transition of the PAIMI functions to a private non-profit entity. Please feel free to contact P&A with any questions or comments about the priorities. Callers should contact Gretchen Knauff, Assistant Director, at (800) 842-7303 (toll-free in CT, voice/TTY). Email messages should be sent to

Thursday, December 15, 2016
Advocacy Tips for Working with BRS
  New Publication on Tips for working with the Bureau of Rehabilitation Services

The State of Connecticut is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer and strongly encourages the applications of women, minorities and persons with disabilities.