Members of the media interested in leveraging the extensive disability rights expertise of our attorneys, advocates, or policy specialists are encouraged to contact our Communications Director at (512) 407-2739 or commdir@DRTx.org.

Please take a few minutes to read about using People First Language when writing about disability issues. For instance, statements like “people with disabilities” and “uses a wheelchair” are preferred instead of “the disabled” or “wheelchair bound.”

DOJ SSLC Monitoring Reports

People with Disabilities at Risk During Emergency Due to Non-Compliant Communication

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 27, 2020 CONTACT: Edie Surtees, Disability Rights Texas Communications Director 512-407-2739 esurtees@drtx.org Texas Emergency Information Not in Compliance with the ADA Letter to Texas Governor and Department of Emergency Management Demands Immediate Resolution AUSTIN—People with disabilities are being put at risk during the cororavirus pandemic – and not just because of… Continue reading People with Disabilities at Risk During Emergency Due to Non-Compliant Communication

DRTx Services Continue During Outbreak, Offices Closed to the Public

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 14, 2020 PRESS CONTACT: Edie Surtees, Disability Rights Texas Communications Director 512-407-2739 esurtees@drtx.org UPDATE AS OF 3/23/2020: We have extended our emergency operational procedures explained below until at least May 15, 2020.  Other helpful numbers: Applying for our legal services: 1-800-252-9108 or intake.DRTx.org Clients who have open cases: 1-800-315-3876 Public events,… Continue reading DRTx Services Continue During Outbreak, Offices Closed to the Public

Disability Rights Texas Receives Census Grant from HOGG Foundation

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: December 19, 2019 CONTACT: Edie Surtees, Disability Rights Texas Communications Director 512-407-2739 esurtees@drtx.org Ike Evans, HOGG Foundation for Mental Health Public Affairs Representativei 512-471-4804 or 512-293-4265 Imani.evans@austin.utexas.edu Hogg Foundation Awards $2.1 Million in 2020 Census Grants  Disability Rights Texas Receives Grant to Reach People with Disabilities AUSTIN, Texas–The Hogg Foundation for Mental… Continue reading Disability Rights Texas Receives Census Grant from HOGG Foundation

New Board Members for 2020

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: October 15, 2019 CONTACT: Edie Surtees Communications Director 512.407.2739 esurtees@DRTx.org Disability Advocacy Agency Announces New Board Officers, Members AUSTIN—Disability Rights Texas (DRTx), the legal protection and advocacy agency for people with disabilities in Texas, has elected new officers and appointed new members to its board of directors for fiscal year 2020. The… Continue reading New Board Members for 2020

Texans with Disabilities Organize to Increase Voting Participation

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: July 15, 2019 CONTACT: Molly Broadway, Voting Rights Training Specialist Disability Rights Texas 512-407-2725 mbroadway@drtx.org Mark Cundall, Organizer REV UP Texas 602-818-3752 mcundall8@gmail.com July 16th Press Conference and Registrar Training To Kick Off National Disability Voter Registration Week in Texas AUSTIN—Advocacy groups across Texas are teaming up to bring state and national… Continue reading Texans with Disabilities Organize to Increase Voting Participation

How Texas Schools Are Failing Students with Mental Illness

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: May 1, 2019 CONTACT: Edie Surtees, Communications Director Direct Line: 512.407.2739 Email: esurtees@drtx.org Children Routinely Denied Education Services During Hospitalization AUSTIN—In an investigative report released today, Disability Rights Texas (DRTx) reveals a troubling trend regarding the education of students with mental illness. After a year of monitoring the provision of education in psychiatric… Continue reading How Texas Schools Are Failing Students with Mental Illness

TEA Funding App Reveals More Compliance Failures

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For Immediate Release: March 27, 2019 Contact: Edie Surtees Communications Director Direct Line: 512.407.2739 Email: esurtees@DRTx.org Advocates Call for Action, Not Promises AUSTIN—Every year the Texas Education Agency (TEA) must submit a formal request to the U.S. Department of Education for state funding under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). Its recent application is… Continue reading TEA Funding App Reveals More Compliance Failures

New Texas Mental Illness Advocacy Council Members Selected for 2019

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE November 15, 2018 CONTACT Edie Surtees, Communications Director 512.407.2739 esurtees@DRTx.org AUSTIN—Disability Rights Texas (DRTx) welcomes the following new members to its Protection and Advocacy for Individual with Mental Illness (PAIMI) Advisory Council: Lisa Broussard of Willis and Samantha Smith of Dallas. Returning members include Anna Gray of San Antonio (Chair), Bennett Brier of… Continue reading New Texas Mental Illness Advocacy Council Members Selected for 2019

Disability Rights Texas Selects New Board Members, Officers for 2019

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Disability Rights Texas (DRTx), the legal protection and advocacy agency for people with disabilities in Texas, has elected new officers and appointed new members to its board of directors for fiscal year 2019. New Board Officers include Tresi Weeks, Chair; Jessica Toste, Vice Chair; Drew Wilborn, Treasurer; Brook Roberts, Secretary; and Joseph Muniz, Immediate Past Chair. New to the Board are Brandon Duke of Houston, Mary Keller Alexander of Valley View (in North Texas), Karen Hale of Austin, and Amanda Lee Storer of Tyler. Board members continuing to serve are Richard Anderson of Austin, Michael Cichowicz of Tyler, Anna Gray of San Antonio, Bola Oyeleye of Houston, Christian Salas of El Paso, Todd Whitaker of Lubbock, and Stephania Williams of Killeen. Continue reading Disability Rights Texas Selects New Board Members, Officers for 2019

Texas in Violation of Federal Education Law for Second Time, Likely a Third

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The U.S. Department of Education decision that the TEA had short changed students with disabilities in state aid in the 2011-2012 school year is not an isolated violation of federal law.  In a review of the state’s most recent application for a federal special education grant, Disability Rights Texas has uncovered that TEA budget officials acknowledge that under the U.S. Department of Education standard for state special education outlays, Texas did not spend at the appropriate rate on students with disabilities in the 2016-2017 school year. Continue reading Texas in Violation of Federal Education Law for Second Time, Likely a Third