Housing Not Handcuffs Justice Network

About the Network

The Housing Not Handcuffs Justice Network (HNHJN) is a group of litigators and legal advocates whose work involves fighting the criminalization of homelessness. Launched in 2018 as a sub-group to our Housing Not Handcuffs Campaign, HNHJN is now a hub for more than 100 lawyers and advocates from around the country. HNHJN members are part of an active email listserv, where members readily share news, ideas, and information pertaining the criminalization of homelessness. HNHJN members meet via Zoom monthly through the Sweeps Working Group to discuss active and prospective litigation, collaborate on litigation strategy, share federal and local policy updates, and discuss emerging topics related to the criminalization of homelessness.  

Recently, the Law Center added a Vehicle Residency Working Group to HNHJN, which meets every other month to work on fighting the criminalization of vehicle residency through policy reform, organizing, and litigation. HNHJN members are also invited to participate in “Special Meetings” that occur every few months and focus on discrete topics related to the criminalization of homelessness. In November, HNHJN members participated in a discussion on manufactured housing/mobile homes and related discrimination as part of this Special Meeting Series. Future topics for this series include Disaster Relief, Exclusionary Zoning, and Grassroots Organizing.  

HNHJN members sign Common Interest Agreements prior to joining the network, which protects communications made in the working group meetings, and allows members to freely share information about prospective and pending litigation in ways that are conducive to collaboration and discussion. Additionally, HNHJN members are given access to HighQ, the Law Center’s online library of case materials, secondary sources, and research memoranda that are meant to aid lawyers and advocates in crafting legal arguments and ultimately challenging harmful policies that criminalize homelessness.  

Highlighted Cases

Sign reading: fight poverty not the poor

If you have any questions or would like to learn more about the Housing Not Handcuffs Justice Network, contact Lily Milwit at lmilwit@homelesslaw.org, and follow @HNHCampaign on Twitter.  

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