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Governor Jerry Brown Signs Important State Affordable Housing Bill

AB 2222 will strengthen the state density bonus law by increasing the affordability requirement of all low and very low income units.

Los Angeles County Agrees to Comprehensive Reforms to General Relief Program

A coalition of advocates for Los Angeles's most vulnerable communities announced a settlement agreement with the County of Los Angeles that will lead to major changes to the General Relief program, pending court approval.

On June 10, representatives from more than 30 major hospitals in Southern California heard from local and national leaders about the opportunities for better care for homeless patients with chronic illnesses.

New Report Details Strategy for LA Transit Partnership on Affordable Housing

Public Counsel's new report about the future of Los Angeles details a strategy for how mass-transit planners can encourage the growth of affordable housing.

San Pedro Partnership Is 'Crucial' for Residents in Need of Legal Help

Public Counsel's partnership with Toberman Neighborhood Center shows how we take a small-town approach to people in need of good legal help.

The Sequester and Social Security

The Balanced Budget and Emergency Deficit Control Act (BBEDCA), also known popularly as the sequester, will not affect the payment of ongoing Social Security or SSI benefits, or affect Medicare or Medi-Cal. Those programs are specifically exempt from cuts under Section 255 of the Act.

Direct Deposit now required for Social Security and SSI payments

As of March 1, 2013, recipients of Social Security, SSI, Veterans, and other federal benefits payments must choose an electronic or direct deposit method of receiving the monthly payments. There will be virtually no more paper checks after that date.

USC Law Student Connects the Dots on Preventing Homelessness

USC Law student Marlena McMurchie's work with Public Counsel CARES has "helped to remind me why I went to law school in the first place," she says.

Agreement Ends Fair Housing Lawsuit Against Lancaster

There's major news from Lancaster: The Community Action League and the California State Conference of the NAACP announced they will move forward with the City of Lancaster to promote fair housing for all Lancaster residents.

More than 60 Groups Oppose LA City Housing Law That Would Target Veterans, Seniors

More than 60 groups have signed a letter that supports shared housing as a solution to homelessness and a path to independence and security.

Shocking Case Puts Patient Dumping Back in the Spotlight

Public Counsel helped expose the problem of patient dumping by Los Angeles hospitals and change it. But a new case featured in the Los Angeles Times puts the issue back in the spotlight.

LA County Takes Major Step to Combat Section 8 Discrimination in the Antelope Valley

A Public Counsel lawsuit last year exposed a frightening fact: For years, black and Latino families who are part of the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program in the cities of Lancaster and Palmdale faced harassment from officials. Now Los Angeles County has approved a breakthrough agreement that that will combat discrimination and help heal the divisions in the community.

Antelope Valley Fair Housing Update: U.S. Launches Probe of L.A. Sheriff Over Racial Allegations

U.S. officials are investigating possible fair housing violations in the Antelope Valley, Assistant Attorney General Tom Perez told reporters. The huge announcement comes two months after Public Counsel and other groups filed a federal lawsuit against the cities of Lancaster and Palmdale.

Public Counsel Helps Venice Residents Protect a 'Unique Place'

Public Counsel and Venice residents filed an agreement that protects the largest federally subsidized housing development on Los Angeles' Westside for 20 years.

California Parents Escaping Poverty Can Keep Child Care

Having affordable, safe child care is critical for parents escaping poverty. The state of California has agreed to ensure that working families will continue to have assistance, despite ongoing budget uncertainties in Sacramento.

'A Better Life for Families': Public Counsel and Antelope Valley Residents Fight for Fair Housing

Antelope Valley residents went to court on Tuesday, June 7, to stop racial discrimination against 3,600 black and Latino families in Lancaster and Palmdale, two cities north of Los Angeles.

We're Helping Mothers with Their Lives, not Just the Law

Public Counsel's medical-legal partnership with SHIELDS for Families and St. John's Well Child and Family Health Center can keep small problems from becoming big ones.

We're Helping 'Unlock the Courthouse Doors' for Tenants Facing Eviction

Public Counsel is one of four prominent legal groups awarded $8.4 million over three years to provide legal representation and other assistance to 15,000 people facing eviction in some of Los Angeles' poorest neighborhoods.

South LA Residents' Voices are Heard Loud and Clear in Negotiations over Major Development Project Along the Expo Line

Public Counsel Staff Attorney Serena Lin negotiated a multi-million dollar community benefits agreement on behalf of community groups in South LA -- providing health care for the underserved, affordable housing, living wage jobs and small business development.

Affordable Housing Gets Short Shrift

The Los Angeles Times article, "Cities often give short shrift to affordable housing," detailed how cities across California are skirting or ignoring laws requiring them to build affordable housing - and wasting tax dollars in the process. Read more about the pro bono firms and agencies who have worked with Public Counsel to bring this issue to the public.

Paraplegic Patient "Dumped" Without his Wheelchair

A 43-year old paraplegic man who was homeless was discharged from the hospital onto skid row without his wheelchair. Public Counsel helped him secure shelter and medical care, and fought for new discharge protocols for future homeless patients.

60 New Affordable Homes for Seniors - In Honor of Rosa Parks

Public Counsel and pro bono attorneys helped to make possible the development of the Rosa Parks Villas, 60 homes for low-income seniors and a gateway to revitalizing the Crenshaw corridor.

Homeless Students are Back on the Bus to School

Public Counsel and other advocates fight to ensure that homeless children receive appropriate transportation to be able to finish the school year.

Entrepreneur Emerges from Homelessness

Kika moved to Los Angeles with the dream of making her small business a success. Although personal challenges led her to spend time in a homeless shelter, she is now back on her feet and successfully expanding her company.

Homeless Man Faced with Navigating the Appeals System to Get His House Back

Mr. Pilar was rendered homeless and was forced to live out of his car when someone forged a signature purporting to transfer his house to another person. Mr. Pilar filed a handwritten complaint in Los Angeles Superior Court. The court dismissed the lawsuit, saying Mr. Pilar did not adequately explain why he was entitled to relief. Mr. Pilar appealed, with assistance from Public Counsel's Appellate Law Program.

Pregnant and Homeless

Denise was 19 years old, single, pregnant, homeless, and had outstanding tickets when she met Public Counsel AmeriCorps Legal Fellow Christine Khalili-Borna at a legal clinic provided by Public Counsel in a drop-in center for homeless youth.

Lynwood Families Fight to Preserve Affordable Homes

When the City of Lynwood approved the demolition of a mobile home park, eight families from the park approached Public Counsel with a plea to help save their homes. On behalf of these eight families and all other low-income residents of Lynwood, Public Counsel's Community Development Project (CDP) engaged in a two-year legal battle with the Lynwood Redevelopment Agency.

Family Child Care Provider Threatened With Eviction

A young mother who provides family child care in her apartment was threatened with eviction, after her landlord was ordered by the L.A. Housing Department to reduce her rent due to negligent maintenance. Public Counsel and volunteer attorneys from Jones Day fought to help her stay in her home and continue to provide child care to her community.

Elderly Woman Saves Her Family Home

An 83 year-old grandmother was on the verge of losing the home in which she had lived and raised her family since 1967. Public Counsel helped her fight back and she was able to keep her property. This article describes her story, and a common home equity fraud scam that preys upon elderly homeowners.