Office for Persons with Disabilities and Special Needs

Office Contacts

Manuel Ramirez, Director
mramirez@ucnj.org
908-527-4807

Helen Alvarado
PASP Consultant
halvarado@ucnj.org
908-527-4845

Jasmine Whitous
Program Coordinator
Jwhitous@ucnj.org
908-527-4781

Leighton Heisey
Advisory Board/Information and Referral
leighton.heisey@ucnj.org
908-527-4840

Contact Form

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Mission

The Union County Office for Persons with Disabilities & Special Needs offers social and recreational opportunities to individuals of all abilities and ages from elementary school children to senior adults.

In addition to activities, the Office provides information and referral to community resources such as rental and utility assistance, entitlements, accessibility issues, transition services and more.

The Office’s main goal is to advocate for persons with disabilities of all ages, as well as ensure inclusion and accessibility in all aspects of community life.

Advisory Board for the Disabled (ABD)

The ABD meets throughout the year to study and evaluate matters affecting the interests of Union County residents with disabilities and advise the Union County Board of County Commissioners. 

Core Advisory Group (CAG)

Working with FEMA and emergency coordinators at the County, the CAG helps persons with disabilities & special needs plan for instances of disaster and recovery, eliminating barriers that may arise in a time of emergency and ensuring that all persons with disabilities are included.

Please watch the latest Active Shooter Video provided by the CAG

A message from CAG Chair John Waters 

Coming soon

Information & Referral

OPDSN provides information and referral resources to those living in Union County on issues such as housing, entitlements, transition services, and employment resources. Please see the list below of County, State, and Federal resources.

Personal Assistance Service Program (PASP)

The PASP helps program participants pursue vocational goals and live independently.  The PASP can assist people with disabilities who are working, going to college, attending a vocational training program or involved in volunteer activities (minimum of 20 volunteer hours per month).  To be eligible, PASP applicants must have a permanent physical disability, be age 18 through 70, be capable of self-direction, able to supervise a personal assistant and live in a community-based residence in New Jersey. 

Social and Recreation Programs

Throughout the year, OPDSN offers a variety of social and recreational programs and activities for those living with disabilities & special needs in Union County. To learn more about the programs and to sign up, please visit: ucnj.org/opdsn-reg

Resources

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)
New Jersey Resource Guide