People of AC – Sarah Voigt
Sarah is AC's Director of Legal Services. She works in the New Orleans office.
What do you do at AC?
I joined the Advocacy Center in 1996 as a Managing Attorney and subsequently as Director of Legal Services. My primary area of practice and expertise was Medicaid law and other public benefits. I also handled cases involving issues of rights protection and abuse and neglect for clients living in institutional settings. Since 2009, I have served as Legal Director and I continue to work on impact litigation cases. I am also responsible for supervision and oversight of the agency's Managing Attorneys and Intake Unit.
What has been one of your biggest accomplishments?
In terms of systemic impact litigation, it would be the Chisholm class action. Under this action, I have worked to protect and enforce the rights of hundreds of children and helped them obtain medically necessary Medicaid services to which they were entitled under federal law.
In individual case representations, I have helped several clients obtain emergency Medicaid waiver slots, which has allowed them to receive necessary services and remain living in their homes. Without these services, the clients would likely have been forced to live in institutional settings.
I also helped to organize the agency's Investigations Unit and expanded our work to include advocates visiting child residential facilities around the state. This work ultimately resulted in a published report on the very poor conditions and health and safety concerns in these facilities. Following the report, we were successful in working with the state to draft new and much-improved health and safety standards for these facilities.
What do you hope to accomplish in the coming year?
I would like to be able to add an additional attorney to work with me and the Special Education Team on the systemic cases we hope to file.
What's one thing you like about working at AC?
The people I work with, and the work I do helping people.
What's something people might not know about you?
I served as a law clerk for the Louisiana Supreme Court, Office of the Central Staff, from 1987 to 1989, and worked on several death penalty cases.