Subject Area

Counseling, Education, Health Care, Psychology, Public Policy, Rehabilitation Counseling, Social Work


Advocacy programs are prevalent among state government agencies that specialize in serving persons who are deaf or hard of hearing around the United States. The work is crucial to ensuring equal access and equal opportunity, yet the lay advocacy profession is not yet formalized with certification, ethical standards, or training programs for advocates serving this population. Research was conducted to advance efforts to maximize these programs’ effectiveness by compiling components of an ideal model for lay advocacy programs. Directors from state agencies that specialize in serving this population around the country refined the model and described the structure of their programs.