The National Law Center on Homelessness & Poverty released its 2013 Human Right to Housing Report Card today, marked globally as human rights day, reviewing U.S. compliance with the human right to housing in the context of American homelessness over the past year. The report card found that while there were areas of improvement, much more needs to be done.
Today, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) released new data indicating that 610,042 people were homeless as of January 2013, a decrease of 3.8 percent from the 2012 numbers. Maria Foscarinis, Executive Director of the Law Center, says HUD’s estimates combine data on the number of people living outdoors (which is counted differently in every city) and the number in HUD funded emergency shelters and transitional housing (which is limited to the capacity of those programs). This number excludes millions of Americans who are without housing and living doubled up or in motels because HUD programs are full.”
Today, the Law Center released its report on Title V of the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act. This is the third report by the Law Center on the Title V program, which allows vacant federal property to be used, for free, by eligible groups who provide housing or services to homeless persons. Protecting and expanding the ability of homeless service providers to access unused federal property is a critical part of the effort to end and prevent homelessness.
The American Civil Liberties Union of Idaho (ACLU) and the National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty (NLCHP) filed a legal challenge to Boise’s new Anti-Solicitation Ordinance (ORD-34-13) approved by the City Council on Tuesday, September 17, 2013. The lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Federal Court for the District of Idaho.
A trial will begin in a lawsuit filed by NLCHP, Dechert LLP, and other national and state partners, in a federal district court in Milwaukee challenging the State of Wisconsin’s voter ID law. Plaintiffs in the case argue that allowing only certain types of photo ID imposes a severe burden on the right to vote in violation of the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment. Jeremy Rosen, Policy Director at the Law Center, is in Milwaukee this week for the trial.
NLCHP will honor Senator Al Franken (D-MN), Congresswoman Gwen Moore (D -WI), Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP, and Judy Curtis for their work to end homelessness, at the Annual McKinney-Vento Awards in Washington, D.C. Congresswoman Eddie Johnson (D-TX) and ABC7/WJLA-TV News reporter and Washington Business Report anchor Rebecca Cooper will hand out awards and emcee the event.
Today, the U.S. House of Representative voted to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) by a vote of 286-138. This is the same bill passed by the Senate on February 12, and will now go to President Barack Obama, who is expected to sign it into law.