Washington, D.C. – On December 10, 2015 the National Law Center on Homelessness & Poverty issued its annual report card on the human right to housing in the U.S., praising the progress if the federal government in addressing the criminalization of homelessness, but condemning its ongoing failure to stem the tide of homelessness by ensuring adequate, affordable housing in available to all.
Washington, D.C. – On December 9, 2015 the Department of Justice’s Office of Community Oriented Policing Services, published a newsletter encouraging law enforcement to promote alternatives to the criminalization of homelessness. The newsletter, which reaches more then 6,500 subscribers across the country, included articles produced in coordination with the Departments of Housing and Urban Development, Health & Human Services, U.S Interagency Council on Homelessness, and the National Law Center on Homelessness & Poverty.
Washington, D.C. – A new must-see documentary film, Under the Bridge: The Criminalization of Homelessness, shines a spotlight on the growing problem of visible homelessness and one city’s attempt to hide the people it should be helping.
Boise, ID – On October 28, 2015, the National Law Center on Homelessness & Poverty and Idaho Legal Aid Services, with the Pro Bono representation of Latham & Watkins LLC, filed a Notice of Appeal with the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals appeal the dismissal, on jurisdictional grounds, of the case challenging the City of Boise’s policies that criminalize people experiencing homelessness for sleeping outside. The Court’s decision did not consider the merits of the Plaintiff’s constitutional claims. Plaintiffs prevailed in a prior appeal after the Court dismissed the case on other jurisdictional grounds.
On Tuesday October 27th, 2015 the National Law Center on Homelessness & Poverty (“The Law Center”) will be honoring Sports Illustrated, Senator Sherrod Brown, Latham & Watkins LLP, and Roberto “Bobby” Limon, at the 17th Annual McKinney-Vento Awards in Washington D.C. The Law Center will be honoring these exceptional people and organizations, as well as celebrating 26 years of high impact work to protect the rights of people experiencing homelessness and to end homelessness in America.
WASHINGTON, DC – September 18, 2015, the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD) added to the growing federal pressure against criminalization of homelessness by incentivizing communities to take steps to end criminalization in its $1.9 billion grant program for federal homelessness funding.
The National Law Center on Homelessness & Poverty is releasing its latest resource, No Barriers: A Legal Advocate’s Guide to Ensuring Compliance with the Education Program of the McKinney-Vento Act. The Law Center is publishing this resource because too many young people experiencing homelessness are currently denied education rights guaranteed to them by federal law. The Law Center offers this manual as a tool for legal advocates and attorneys to assist children, youth, and families experiencing homelessness.
Less than a week after the Department of Justice argued that criminalization of homelessness is unconstitutional, filing a brief in a case where the National Law Center on Homelessness & Poverty (Law Center) represents homeless individuals ticketed for camping, the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness (USICH) took a further step today by releasing official guidance for communities coping with the growth of homeless encampments.
Justice Department Condemns Local Criminalization of Homelessness, Files Brief in Case Against Boise, Idaho
On August 6, 2015, the Department of Justice put enforcement power behind longstanding federal policy against criminalization of homelessness by filing a statement of interest brief in a case opposing a Boise, ID anti-camping ordinance brought by the National Law Center on Homelessness & Poverty (NLCHP) and Idaho Legal Aid Services, with the pro bono support of Latham & Watkins LLP.
On Tuesday, June 16, 2015, Maria Foscarinis, Executive Director of the National Law Center on Homelessness & Poverty, testified before a subcommittee of U.S. House of Representatives about a federal program that requires agencies to make their unused real property available at no cost to help people experiencing homelessness.
On Monday, March 2nd, 2015, Indianapolis, Indiana became the first city in the nation to pass a full scale homeless bill of rights to protect homeless people from common forms of discrimination…Despite this pioneering effort by the City-County Council, some fear that Mayor Greg Ballard may veto the bill. Homeless advocates, however, urge the Mayor to let the legislation stand, citing its many long-term benefits.
The National Law Center on Homelessness & Poverty (Law Center) asked the U.S. Supreme Court to review last fall’s 7th Circuit Court of Appeals decision in Frank v. Walker, our challenge to the Wisconsin voter ID statute. In our petition to the Court, the Law Center argued that the appeals court decision mischaracterized facts found at trial, and applied a flawed legal standard in analyzing both equal protection and Voting Rights Act claims.