DRM endeavors to maximize its resources and empower people with disabilities to the greatest extent possible by providing information, training, and resources that will help people advocate for themselves, or for others who have a disability.

DRM attempts to assist all individuals who contact us, even if the inquiry falls outside our service areas, by providing information and referrals to connect them to useful resources.

Listed below are a number of excellent publications created by DRM to assist individuals with disabilities and inform the public. DRM has also compiled various websites where more helpful information can be found.


Please contact DRM at 1-800-233-7201 if you would like any of the following documents in an alternative format(s).

Special Education

1.Changes in Maryland Law Regarding Parental Consent in the IEP Process  (2017) (Word) – A two-page fact sheet explaining the new rights that parents have in the special education process regarding decisions about alternate assessments, certificates of program completion, placement in non-credit bearing programs, and restraint/seclusion.
Related: Maryland State Technical Assistance Bulletin

2. The School Discipline Process: A Handbook for Maryland Families and Professionals  (2017) – a 44-page handbook about the school discipline process for all students, especially those with disabilities. (PDF)

3. Extended School Year Services an advocate’s guide to the legal issues involved in obtaining ESY services for school-aged children. This 28-page outline was developed with a grant from, and posted with the permission of, the National Association of Protection and Advocacy Services (now called National Disability Rights Network). (PDF)

4. Chronology of the Vaughn G. special education lawsuit against Baltimore City Public City Schools. This document sets out the history of the case from 1988 to 2008. (PDF)

5. In the Name of Treatment: A Parent’s Guide to Protecting Your Child From the Use of Restraint, Aversive Interventions, and Seclusions. This 18-page handbook produced by the Alliance to Prevent Restraint, Aversive Interventions, and Seclusion (APRAIS) can be downloaded here. (PDF)*This is not a DRM publication.

6. Obtaining Special Education Services for Children with Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). January 2011 (PDF).

7. Together Beyond the School Day: TIPS for parents and caregivers. August 2016 (PDF).
Related: Mas alla del Dia Escolar: Actividades Fuera de Tiempo de la Escuela para TODOS! (PDF)

8. Know Your Rights! Interacting with Police in Schools. November 2017 (PDF)

9. Know Your Rights! Student Suspension Rights in Maryland. September 2016 (PDF).

10. Know Your Child’s Rights! A Guide to the Suspension & Expulsion Rights of Your Child in Maryland. June 2020 (PDF).

11. Out of School Time (OST) Information Booklet. August 2012 (PDF).

12. Maryland Laws for Parental Consent at IEP Meetings: An 80-minute video with an accompanying PowerPoint presentation about changes to Maryland’s law. Developed in conjunction with the Howard County Autism Society (January 2018).

13. DRM’s Education Team’s Live Q&A Sessions (2020-Present): In 2020, Disability Rights Maryland’s Education Team began hosting live Q&A sessions to help parents and families understand their children’s rights to special education services amid COVID-19. Click to watch past sessions on our YouTube channel.

14. Special Education Rights: A Handbook for Maryland Families and Professionals 13th Edition (2020): A 58-page handbook designed as a guide for helping families navigate the special education system and IEP process. Includes sample forms and letters (PDF)

15. IEP Modification/Amendment or Individualized Continuity of Learning Plans: Preserving The Rights You and Your Child Have Under the Law (2020): A Brief Guide for Parents #1
En Español: Modificación/Enmienda del Plan Educacional Individualizado (IEP por sus siglas en inglés) o Planes Individualizados de Continuidad de Aprendizaje: Preservando los derechos que usted y su estudiante tienen bajo la ley (2020): Una Guía Breve para Padres #1 

16. Special Education During the COVID-19 Pandemic (2020): A Brief Guide for Parents #2
En Español: Educación especial y su estudiante con un Plan Educacional Incivilizado (IEP por sus siglas en inglés) durante la pandemia de COVID-19 (2020): Una Guía Breve para Padres #2

17. Special Communication with the IEP Team and Data Collection During the Pandemic (2021): A Brief Guide for Parents #3 
En Español: Comunicación con el equipo del IEP y recopilación de datos durante la pandemia (2021):  Una Guía Breve para Padres #3

18. Sample Behavioral Observation Log (2021)

19. Special Transition Planning and Special Education Services for Students Exiting School (2021): A Brief Guide for Parents #4

20. Compensatory Education During the COVID-19 Pandemic (2021): A Brief Guide for Parents #5

21. Sample Maryland State Department of Education IDEA Complaint (2021)

Social Security/ Medicaid for Working Adults

1. Social Security Administration Ticket to Work fact sheet – a series of fact sheets in Question and Answer format, describing the Social Security Administration’s Ticket to Work program. (2017. PDF.)

Your Ticket to Work Brochure – Social Security Administration (Feb. 2015. PDF)
Get Started Today – five ways to learn more about the Ticket to Work program.

General Ticket to Work Information
What Can an Employment Network Do For Me?
Choosing an Employment Network
Your Rights in the Ticket to Work Program
Ticket to Work Grievance Process

2. Employed Individuals with Disabilities (EID), also known as the “Medicaid Buy-In”. Current information can be found by visiting the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene’s EID webpage.

3. Representative Payee: reporting allegations of misuse of funds

4. Information for people with a representative payee managing their Social Security money

Children’s Medicaid Services

1. How to Request and Prepare for a Medicaid Appeal:This 8-page document written by Disability Rights Maryland helps Medicaid applicants and recipients know their appeal rights if their services are denied, reduced, or terminated, and it provides guidance on how to pursue the Medicaid appeal process in Maryland. October 2018. (PDF)

2. How to Appeal a Denial, Reduction, or Termination of Community First Choice Personal Assistance Services (revised Oct. 2018) – As a supplement to the more general guide on Medicaid service appeals, this document can be used in preparing for a hearing regarding Community First Choice (CFC) personal assistance services. It outlines the eligibility for the CFC program and the types of documents and evidence that you can prepare and use in a CFC hearing.

3. Accessing Mental Health Services for Children in Maryland Through the Medical Assistance Medicaid EPSDT Benefit a fact sheet for you to use in order to help a child under the age of 21 to get medically necessary services through the Medical Assistance program. Sept. 2009 (PDF)
Sample Service Request Letter (Microsoft Word)
Sample Follow-Up Letter (Microsoft Word)

4a. Accessing Services for Children with Developmental Disabilities in Maryland through Medical Assistance/Medicaid and MCHP: a 10-page handbook about using Medicaid, Medical Assistance, and Maryland Children’s Health Program to get services for children with developmental disabilities. Sept 2009 (PDF)

4b. Access to Children’s Medical Services Through Medical Assistance. A short, easy-to-read version of the handbook listed above (document #2a). Sept 2009 (PDF)

5. Access to Children’s Mental Health Services Through Medical Assistance. Sept 2009 (Word Doc)

5a. Maryland’s Autism Waiver; A Practical Guide for Families – UPDATE IN PROGRESS. PLEASE CHECK BACK.
5b. Maryland’s Autism Waiver Fact Sheet – UPDATE IN PROGRESS. PLEASE CHECK BACK.
5c. Sample Service Request Letter for the Autism Waiver – UPDATE IN PROGRESS. PLEASE CHECK BACK.
5d. Sample Hearing Request Letter for the Autism Waiver – UPDATE IN PROGRESS. PLEASE CHECK BACK.

6. Evidence-Based Practices for Delinquent Youth with Mental Illness in Maryland: Medicaid Must Cover These Cost-Effective Services. (PDF) This public report issued January 31, 2007, makes the case that Maryland must cover three evidence-based practices (EBPs) for delinquent youth with mental illness who need them under the State’s Medicaid program. These practices — Functional Family Therapy, Multisystemic Therapy, and Multidimensional Treatment Foster Care — have been demonstrated to reduce juvenile violence and delinquency, thus improving outcomes for youth and saving states money at the same time. DRM makes recommendations for state agency action to add these practices to its State Medicaid Plan and take advantage of federal matching funds that other states have been able to receive for these services.

7. Assistive Technology: School to Community Transition Project. A short pamphlet describing DRM’s work in this area. October 2012. (PDF)

Adult Medicaid Services

1. How to Request and Prepare for a Medicaid Appeal: This 8-page document written by Disability Rights Maryland helps Medicaid applicants and recipients know their appeal rights if their services are denied, reduced, or terminated, and it provides guidance on how to pursue the Medicaid appeal process in Maryland. October 2018. (PDF)

2. How to Appeal a Denial, Reduction, or Termination of Community First Choice Personal Assistance Services (revised Oct. 2018) – As a supplement to the more general guide on Medicaid service appeals, this document can be used in preparing for a hearing regarding Community First Choice (CFC) personal assistance services. It outlines the eligibility for the CFC program and the types of documents and evidence that you can prepare and use in a CFC hearing.

3. Accessing Services for Adults Age 21 and Older with Developmental Disabilities through Maryland Medical Assistance/ Medicaid – A 20-page handbook in “question and answer” format. August 2012. (PDF)

4. Get the Health Care and Other Services You Need Under Medicaid/ Medical Assistance – a 6-page document for self-advocates. This is also available as a folded booklet by calling our office. September 2008

5. Money Follows the Individual Accountability Act of 2004 (Microsoft Word)- A 2-page summary of a new law effective July 1, 2004, to help people who want to move out of a nursing facility.

6. How to Obtain Assistive Technology Communication Devices from Medical Assistance. October 2012 (PDF)

Developmental Disabilities

1. Resources for Victims of Crime – Quick Tips: a shortened version of our resource guide for victims of abuse, sexual abuse, or neglect. (PDF) (2018).

2. Resources for Victims of Crime – How to Get Help for Abuse, Neglect, or Other Rights Violations. Victims of abuse, sexual abuse, neglect, or other rights violations can get help with these resources and advice (PDF) (2017).

3. Medicaid Waiver Practical Guide. December 2014 (Microsoft Word):
Maryland’s Developmental Disabilities Administration
B. History and Background
C.Applying to DDA for the Medicaid Waiver
D. DDA’s Coordination of Community Services
E. Enrolling in DDA’s Medicaid Waiver
F. Rights of Waiver Recipients
G. Appeals
H.Sample Letters

5.Developmental Disabilities Administration – Eligibility and Priority: This page will provide you with information on the Developmental Disabilities Administration’s (DDA) eligibility criteria and priority categories. May 2016 (Word Doc).

6. Where to Report Abuse or Neglect by a Developmental Disabilities Administration Provider. This page will provide you with contact information for reporting allegations of abuse or neglect by Developmental Disability providers and/or staff. August 2016. (Word Doc)

7. Rosewood Center: A Demand for Closure. (PDF) This public report issued February 1, 2007 documents violations of rights, inadequate treatment, illegal use of restraint and seclusion, failure to protect from harm, continued illegal segregation of persons with intellectual disabilities, the failed mission within the forensic program (including individuals determined “incompetent to stand trial”) and unjustifiable institutional costs. DRM makes recommendations for closing the institution and taking advantage of new federal money to transfer individuals to the community.


1. Voter Hotline Bill of Rights (Word Doc)

2. Ensuring the full participation of people with disabilities in the voting process (Word Doc)

3.  A Guide to the Voting Rights of People with Mental Disabilities: (PDF) from the Bazelon Center, NDRN, Autistic Self-Advocacy Network, Schulte Roth & Zabel LLP (2016).

4. Helping Maryland Vote: An election judge’s guide to helping voters with disabilities (PDF).

5. Information on Maryland’s Accessible Ballot Marking Machines (PDF)

Students in Sports

1. Fitness and Athletic Equity law (Annotated Code of Maryland, Education Article, § 7-4B) (PDF).

2. Corollary Athletic Programs (Code of Maryland Regulations, COMAR 13A.06.04) (Word Doc).

Mental Health

1. Know Your Rights: Sexual Abuse For Adults and Youth in Maryland’s State Psychiatric Facilities and RICAs: (PDF) (2020)

2. Know Your Rights: For Youth in Psychiatric Hospitals & Residential Treatment Centers: (PDF) (2020)

3. Know Your Rights: When Stopped By the Police in Maryland: (PDF) Being stopped by law enforcement is a stressful experience that can go bad quickly. Learn your rights and how to stay safe during police encounters in this brochure created by DRM’s Maryland PAIMI Council (2020).

4. Protection of Children with Disabilities in Residential Facilities – Restraining & Seclusion Training: (VIDEO) Have questions about how you can best support and respond to youth who experience restraint and seclusion in Residential Treatment Centers (RTCs)? This 60-minute online training will provide an overview of the laws regulating the use of restraint and seclusion in RTCs serving children and youth (2020). See also:


1. Mobility Rider Rights and Advocacy Guide. An informational brochure produced by DRM and the rider-advocacy group Consumers for Accessible Ride Services (CARS) (2019).

2. Segregation and Suicide: Confinement at the Maryland Correctional Institution for Women (PDF). This report was completed by DRM and Munib Lohrasbi, a community fellow with the Open Society Institute of Baltimore (OSI). The report discloses the extreme isolation and harm, or risk of harm, to numerous women with significant disabilities housed in the segregation, infirmary, and mental health units at the Maryland Correctional Institution for Women (MCIW). Conditions in the units varied, but DRM observed problems with access to outdoor and indoor recreation; natural light; mattresses or bedding; insufficient treatment plans; and a lack of confidentiality for health care services (2018).

3. Beyond Incarceration: Lock Down for Persons with Disabilities (PDF). Disability Rights Maryland released a detailed report of findings related to segregation and its negative impacts, particularly for persons with disabilities. DRM’s report exposes the harm and misuse of segregation, legal violations, and offers recommendations; including references to better and safer alternatives. 2017.

4. MD Courts Self Help Videos: My Laws, My Courts, My Maryland: A video series for the self-represented.

5. Guardianship and Its Alternatives: A Handbook on Maryland Law.  An 88-page handbook by the University of Maryland School of Law, Law & Healthcare Program, and the Maryland State Bar Association (PDF).

6. Service Animals and Emotional Support Animals by the ADA National Network (PDF)

7. Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act by the Institute for Community Inclusion provides a brief summary of how the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act will help workers, including workers with disabilities, access employment, education, job training, and support services, giving them the chance to advance their careers and secure good jobs for the future (PDF).

8. Planning Now Guide: A comprehensive, easy to use futures and estate planning guide for families of children and adults with developmental disabilities. Topics include financial and healthcare benefits, wills, trusts, tax considerations, financial planning, and more. 2018 (PDF)

9. Maryland Citizens in Psychiatric Crisis: A public report issued in conjunction with the Center for Public Representation, detailing the experiences of individuals with a psychiatric diagnosis in Maryland’s emergency departments and making recommendations to improve quality of care and to expand access to alternative community crisis services (2007, PDF).

DRM Videos

1. SunShineFolk: The Sun Shines Brighter at Home. (2007) A link to YouTube to view a 10-minute film by people with disabilities who left nursing facilities to live in their own homes.

2. Living Free. (2006) A 12-minute film about people with disabilities choosing to live in their own homes rather than in institutions.

3. Behind Closed Doors (2007). A 20-minute film about 4 women struggling to reconcile violence within the psychiatric system.

4. Healing Neen (2010). A 54-minute film following one woman’s powerful transformation from homelessness, addiction, and incarceration to becoming a nationally renowned speaker on the devastating effects of untreated trauma ….. and the hope of recovery.

5. Reasonable Accommodations in the Workplace (2019): a 4-minute video produced by Rooted in Rights, explaining the rights of people with disabilities to receive reasonable accommodations in the workplace.

6. Olmstead Rights to Community Integration (2019): a 3-minute video produced by Rooted in Rights, explaining the rights of people with disabilities to live in integrated community settings rather than institutions.

DRM Annual Reports and General Material

1. 2015-2016 Report to the Community (PDF)
2. 2013-2014 Report to the Community (PDF)
3. 2011-2012 Report to the Community (PDF)
4. 2009-2010 Report to the Community (PDF)
5. 2007-2008 Report to the Community (PDF)
6. 2006-2007 Report to the Community (PDF)
7. Grievance Policy (2017. PDF) and Grievance Form (2017. PDF)
8. DRM Informational Brochure (PDF)

 1. El Proceso de la Disciplina Escolar July 2017. (PDF)

 2. Techologia de Asistencia de la Escuela a la Comunidad Proyecto de Transicion (AT Transition brochure), Oct. 2012. (PDF)

 3. Como Obtener Dispositivos de Comunicacion a traves de Asistencia Medica/ Medicaid (AT Services Under MA brochure), Oct. 2012. (PDF)

 4. Como Obtener Servicios para Ninos con Discapacidades de Desarrollo a traves de Medicaid/ Assistencia Medica en Maryland and MCHP (Children’s DD handbook) Abril 2012. (PDF)

 5. Cómo Obtener Servicios para Adultos Mayores de 21 con Discapacidades de Desarrollo a través del Programa de Asistencia Médica de Maryland/Medicaid (Adult DD handbook) Agosto 2012. (PDF)

 6. Obtenga la Atencion y Servicios de Salud que Necesita con Asistencia Medica/ Medicaid (Self Advocate DD/MA brochure) Mayo 2012. (PDF)

 7. La tutela y sus alternativas: un manual sobrela ley de Maryland (Guardianship handbook) August 2012.(PDF)

 8. Como Obtener Servicios de Educacion Especial para Alumnos con Traumatismo Encefalo Craneano (TEC) o (TBI en Engles). (TBI brochure). October 2011. (PDF)

 9. Mas alla del Dia Escolar: Actividades Fuera de Tiempo de la Escuela para TODOS! (OST Tips for Parents and Caregivers)August 2016. (PDF)

10. Planificar Ahora 2014. (PDF)

11. Derechos de Educación Especial (2020): Un manual de 58 páginas diseñado como una guía para ayudar a las familias a navegar el sistema de educación especial y el proceso del programa educacional individualizado (por sus siglas en inglés IEP). Incluye formularios y cartas de muestra (PDF).

Useful Websites

Listed below are some websites that you may find useful as you seek information about programs and laws related to people with disabilities. Clicking on these sites will take you away from the DRM site. Each of these sites may also have links to other helpful sites.

ADA Center for Mid-Atlantic Region
ADA document portal
Disability and Business Technical Assistance Center
US Access Board

Assistive Technology
Closing the Gap
MD Technology Assistance Project

Centers for Independent Living
Maryland Statewide Independent Living Council  Email:
Eastern Shore Center for Independent Living.  Email:
The Freedom Center (Carroll, Frederick)
Independence Now (Montgmery, Prince George’s)
The IMAGE Center (Baltimore City, Baltimore Co., Harford)
Accessible Resource for Independence (Anne Arundel, Howard)
Resources for Independence (Allegany, Garrett, Washington)
Southern MD Center for Independent Living (Calvert, Charles, St. Mary’s). Email:

U.S. Department of Labor Employment and Training Administration
Association of Persons in Supported Employment
ADA and Equal Employment Opportunity
Department of Labor
Maryland Promise – Employment resources for transitioning youth with disabilities

General Disability Issues/ Support Groups/ Advocacy Groups
Arc of Maryland
Families USA focuses on health care issues
Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities
Hispanic community (health and human service needs)
Public Human Service
Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law
Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund
National Disability Rights Network
Enabled OnLine
Maryland Developmental Disabilities Council
National Senior Citizen’s Law Center
Children’s Defense Fund
Neighborhood Legal Services
Family Net Works Maryland Family Network
Maryland Community Services Locator
Maryland Out of School Time Network

Housing and Urban Development information and news
Housing and Urban Development site
Baltimore Neighborhood Indicators Alliance

Legal Research – Federal
Congressional bills, Federal Register
US Supreme Court opinions
US Dept of Justice Freedom of Information Act
Library of Congress
Federal government statistics
US Dept of Health and Human Services
Find Law research
US Federal Government Agency Directory

Legal Research – State
Code of Maryland Regulations (COMAR)
People’s Law Library
MD Public Interest Law Web (attorneys and advocates only)
MD Legal Aid Bureau
MD “Free Legal Answers” administered by PBRC

Medicare/ Medicaid/Health Care
Baltimore Health Care Access
Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
National Health Law Program
Medicare information
The Medicine Program (free prescription program)
Your Medicare rights

Social Security
Social Security forms, information, rulings, regulations
Benefits Check-up (for senior citizens)

Special Education
US Dept of Education
Learning Disabilities OnLine
Wrights Law
MD State Dept of Education
Parents Place of Maryland
Learning Disabilities Association of America
Advocates for Children and Youth (in Baltimore)
MD educational resources for people with disabilities
Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports
MD Coalition for Inclusive Education
Parent Advocacy Coalition for Educational Rights
Families & Advocates Partnership for Education
Special Education Survival Guide for Parents
Children and Adults with Attention Deficit Disorders
Maryland Association of Nonpublic Special Education Facilities (MANSEF)

State of Maryland Government
State of Maryland homepage
MD General Assembly
MD court decisions
MD Attorney General opinions
MD Dept. of Human Resources Information
MD Public Information Act handbook
Maryland Department of Disabilities

Maryland Mass Transit Administration
Washington Metro Area Transit Authority
US Federal Transit Administration
American Public Transportation Association
Project Action

Maryland State Board of Elections
Bazelon Center