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The Human Rights Authority is the investigative arm of the Illinois Guardianship and Advocacy Commission. The Authority investigates alleged violations of the rights of persons with disabilities by providers of services.
A complaint of an alleged violation can come to the Authority in a number of ways: from a service recipient, a staff person at a facility, or another interested party. It might come in the form of a letter, a telephone call or a personal presentation before the regional Authority at one of its public meetings. Sometimes investigations are initiated by the Authority itself if there is reason to believe a rights violation has occurred.
Some examples of when the Human Rights Authority should be called are:
- Staff are opening clients' mail which comes to the CILA.
- Recipients of mental health services are not allowed to review their clinical records.
- Residents in a program for persons with mental illness or developmental disabilities do not have privacy for telephone use.
- Clients in a residential program are not allowed visitors.
- Recipients of services are not offered the opportunity to actively participate in the individualized treatment planning process.
- Mental health records are filed in general medical records and not handled in a confidential manner.
- Staff discuss clients' problems in front of other clients.
- Patients are not informed of the side effects of medication.
- Personal property of clients is mishandled.
- Restraint or seclusion is not used appropriately.
For further information on the Human Rights Authority and its investigation of alleged violations, please contact the Commission’s toll-free intake number at 1-866-274-8023 (If outside the State of Illinois please dial 1-708-338-7500)