Law 360"I think what the governor's press team tells us is what the governor's intentions were," said Marika Dias, attorney and director of the Safety Net Project at the Urban Justice Center in New York City. "Ultimately, it will be up to the courts to decide the scope of the language of the [order] and what it covers."
NYC Streets Blog“The MTA is opportunistically using the pandemic to make long-sought anti-homeless measures permanent, right at a time when the city’s homeless population is most vulnerable,” said Helen Strom from the Safety Net Project at the Urban Justice Center.
Law 360"We are basically telling folks they should not submit a declaration without getting legal advice first," said Marika Dias, attorney and director of the Safety Net Project at the Urban Justice Center in New York City. "For most people, the declaration makes admissions without the moratorium actually offering them much benefit right now."
Law 360Marika Dias, attorney and director of the Safety Net Project at the Urban Justice Center in New York City, noted that evictions in the state typically take longer than four months to resolve, likely pushing pandemic-related disputes past the Dec. 31 threshold.
Law 360"Currently, in New York City alone, there are over 14,000 households with pending eviction warrants who are in imminent danger of displacement," Marika Dias, managing director of the Urban Justice Center's Safety Net Project, said in a Tuesday statement to Law360.
After months of hearing from clients experiencing significant issues with HRA's Infoline such as dropped calls and excessive wait times, the Urban Justice Center’s Safety Net Project decided to conduct an informal ‘audit’ to test the efficacy of the HRA Infoline. Between June 23, 2020 and August 4, 2020, we made 98 calls to the Infoline and tracked results. The overall rate of calls dropped was over 58 percent. In addition to dropped calls, we also documented significant issues.
NY Daily NewsThe Urban Justice Center, which is focused on helping people secure public benefits, found that more than 50% of calls to the city Human Resources Administration were dropped and 20% had wait times of more than eight minutes.
Curbed NYMarika Dias, the managing director of the Safety Net Project at the Urban Justice Center, stresses it’s a small but critical change that gives those tenants a last-ditch effort to defend their homes, but it’s still a Band-Aid on a gaping wound. “That’s a much better situation than what we were going to see unfold,” says Dias. “That said, people are not going to suddenly have their job or their health restored come October 1. The situation demands a political solution.”
The CityMeanwhile, the 30 people living in the hotel rooms meet every Tuesday evening with organizers from the Urban Justice Center and other groups to strategize, by consensus, their proposals to DHS.
Law 360"Cuomo's order gives permission for the courts to maintain a pause on eviction cases moving forward, but he's not requiring them to," said Marika Dias, managing director of the Safety Net Project at the Urban Justice Center. "So we could see a situation where the courts decide that even though they have permission to pause, they don't have to. Cuomo has taken no steps to prevent that."