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      I-Team: Justice Department probe

      The NBC-10 I-Team has learned that the U.S. Justice Department is investigating whether the state of Rhode Island is in violation of the American Disabilities Act.

      In a letter obtained by the I-Team, the Justice Department states, "The investigation into whether the State of Rhode Island has violated Title II of the American Disabilities Act, and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act."

      The investigation into agencies like the Fogarty Center, Cove Inc., and the Trudeau Center focuses on whether people with intellectual or developmental disabilities are being discriminated against, according to the Justice Department.

      The I-Team confirmed with representatives of the Fogarty Center and Cove Inc., that federal investigators visited their respective facilities last week.

      In the past two years, the state of Rhode Island has made budget cuts that affect some agencies that provide jobs and training to people with disabilities.

      Under Title II of the American Disabilities Act, those people with intellectual or developmental disabilities should be provided with jobs in the community and they need to be provided transportation as necessary.

      Gov. Lincoln Chafee, an independent, had no comment on the federal investigation.

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