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Policy Letters

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Empire Justice Letter of Support for Name Change Legislation
A.2242 (Bronson)/S.5240 (Savino) not only is in line with existing policy, but enhances and clarifies the law for name change applicants who need the benefit of the law’s critical safety protections. Read More

Empire Justice Letter of Support: Restore Meaning to the Medicaid Managed Care Prescriber Prevails Law
Empire Justice Center urges Governor Cuomo to sign A.7208/S.4893 amending New York Social Services Law (SSL) § 364-j(25) regarding prescriber prevails procedures in Medicaid managed care. Read More

Joint Letter of Support: Pass Legislation to Protect Crime and Domestic Violence Victims!
In New York State, and nationwide, no victim of domestic violence or other person threatened with a crime should be afraid to access police or emergency assistance because doing so may jeopardize their housing. Read More

Empire Justice Urges Governor Cuomo to Sign Bill Providing Critical Economic Protections to DV Victims
Despite many domestic violence victims’ needs for immediate safety and freedom from physical violence, long-term safety and security often cannot be achieved without similar relief from economic and financial abuse. A.7400/S.5821 seeks to fill this gap by providing victims of intimate partner violence with relief from some forms of economic abuse. Read More

Empire Justice Letter to the Governor: Sign Critical Protections for Domestic Violence Victims into Law
Holding someone other than the enjoined party liable for violation of the order of protection not only offends the most fundamental due process guarantees of notice and the opportunity to be heard, but also state law prohibitions against the issuance of mutual orders of protection absent proper jurisdiction. If a court does not have the legal authority to actually issue an order of protection against someone, there is no legal authority upon which to hold that same person in contempt for its violation. Read More

Confirm Rep. Mel Watt as Director of FHFA
These letters urge NYS Senators Schumer and Gillibrand to support the confirmation of Melvin Watt as Director of the Federal Housing Finance Agenc Read More

NHELP Letter to CMS Seeking Due Process Improvements in Medicaid Managed Care
Empire Justice signed onto the National Health Law Program's (NHELP's) letter to CMS' Cindy Mann outlining serious due process problems in the Medicaid managed care prior authorization process. Read More

Empire Justice Letter to Governor Cuomo: Sign Legislation to Giving Families Time to Plan for a Change in their Child Care Subsidy
This bill will amend §34-a of the Social Services Law, by adding a new subdivision 9 which incorporates the 60 day notice requirement. Read More

Empire Justice urges Governor to sign OCA "Shadow Docket" bill as soon as possible
The legislation helps homeowners, communities (many of the properties stuck in the shadow docket are believed to be vacant), New York’s court system and will hasten New York’s protracted foreclosure process. The Governor needs to sign it into law to prevent any more cases from ending up in "legal limbo." Read More

NYRL Letter to Governor to Sign Shadow Docket
New Yorkers for Responsible Lending (“NYRL”) respectfully encourages you to sign S.4530-A/A.5582-A without delay. The legislation is a simple fix to a problem in New York’s foreclosure process, and is urgently needed to save New Yorkers’ homes from foreclosure. By signing the bill into law, you will close a legal loophole and put an end to New York’s “shadow docket,” in which tens of thousands of foreclosure cases sit inactive – leaving New Yorkers in legal limbo for months and even years. With an estimated 92 foreclosure cases entering New York’s shadow docket each day, time is of the essence. Read More

Empire Justice Center and Other Consumer Organizations Urge CFPB to Expand HMDA
Empire Justice is one of 14 organizations urging CFPB to act quickly to commence its HMDA rulemaking and work with HUD to create and make public the sorely-needed national mortgage default and foreclosure database. Read More

Letter from Advocates to Nassau and Suffolk DSS re: D-SNAP
On November 27th, advocates from Long Island and around the state wrote to DSS Commissioners in Nassau and Suffolk Counties asking them to request D-SNAP from the federal government to assist Long Island residents impacted by Superstorm Sandy. Read More

Advocates Call on NYC to request D-SNAP
Legal Services and Anti Hunger groups call on Mayor Bloomberg and HRA Commissioner Doar to request Disaster SNAP benefits from the feds to help those in NYC impacted by Superstorm Sandy. D-SNAP is anticipated to bring in at least $50 million in federally funded benefts. Read More

NYRL Urges CFPB to Strengthen Mortgage Servicing Regulations
Empire Justice Center is just one of dozens of New Yorkers for Responsible Lending (NYRL) members that signed this letter urging the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) to revise its proposed mortgage servicing regulations to better protect homeowners. Read More

UPDATE: Governor Signs Probation Transfer Fix
Thank you to Governor Cuomo for increasing the safety and security of victims of domestic violence by signing several new bills into law. This bill strikes a reasonable balance between the administration of probation, judicial discretion, and the rights and needs of domestic violence victims and parents. Read More

Empire Justice Letter to CMS in Support of NY's Super Waiver Proposal
We are pleased to support New York State’s recent request for an amendment to the New York Partnership Plan which includes a new program that would provide independent, individual and systemic advocacy on behalf of people with disabilities and chronic illnesses that are newly enrolled in Medicaid Managed Care and other new models of care management. Read More

New York Organizations Oppose Capital One's Acquisition of HSBC's Credit Card Business
Six New York legal services and consumer advocacy organizations, including Empire Justice Center, tell the OCC to deny Capital One's application to acquire HSBC's credit card and private label credit business. Read More

NYRL Members Urge Federal Office to Implement Insurance Data Disclosure Regulation
NYRL members urge the new Federal Insurance Office to use its authority under Dodd-Frank to implement a national homeowners insurance data disclosure regulation to hold insurers accountable and help ensure that all communities have access to fair and affordable insurance products. Read More

U.S. Senate Needs to Confirm Cordray to Lead Consumer Bureau
Empire Justice Center is among 220 organizations urging Senate to confirm Richard Cordray to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). Read More

Empire Justice Delivers Letter to Governor in Support of Health Related Legal Services Legislation
Health-Related Legal Services Programs promote collaboration between healthcare professionals and lawyers at healthcare settings for the purpose of identifying and resolving legal issues affecting patients’ health and well-being. Read More

Steering Committee of Statewide Campaign to Save the Foreclosure Prevention Services Program Sends Letter to Governor Cuomo Asking for Program to be Funded in Budget
The 27 members of the Campaign Steering Committee sent a letter to the Governor asking for $25 million in the 2012 budget. The statewide program, which funds housing counselling and legal services for homeowners at risk of foreclosure is scheduled to run out of funding December 31st, 2011. Read More

Empire Justice Center and Other Civil Rights Organizations Urge GSE Reform That Protects Access to Affordable Loans and Housing
Sixteen civil rights organizations sign letter to House Financial Services Committee urging members to abandon piece meal approach to GSE reform. Read More

Empire Justice Urges Governor Cuomo to Sign Critical Domestic Violence Legislation
Update the Social Services Law to include protection for victims in "intimate relationships." Read More

GRCRC Urges Fed to Withdraw Proposed Mortgage Regulations
The proposed rule would eviscerate borrowers’ extended right to rescind a mortgage loan, significantly reducing remedies for homeowners against lenders who violate TILA. Read More

New Yorkers for Responsible Lending Letter to NY Senators on the Restoring American Stability Act of 2010
The Act must guarantee that federal laws and rules serve as a floor, rather than a ceiling preventing states from enacting strong laws in response to local conditions. Read More

Empire Justice Center Letter in Support of Allowing More Time to Pay Utility Arrears
A.7449/S.3638 would extend the time period for repaying utility assistance provided by local social services districts from one year to two years. Read More

Empire Justice Center Letter in Support of Bill to Protect Confidentiality
This important bill allows home based family child care providers to opt out of the requirement that their names and addresses be posted on the website of the Office of Children and Family Services. Read More

Empire Justice Center Letter to FTC on Mortgage Acts and Practices Rulemaking
Comments regarding the Federal Trade Commission’s proposed rulemaking proceeding with respect to mortgage loans. Read More

Empire Justice Urges Governor to Sign Bill to Improve Access to Child Care Assistance
This bill encourages applicants for and recipients of child care subsidies to obtain orders of child support, but makes clear that such applicants and recipients may not be required to obtain such orders as a condition of receiving a subsidy. Read More

Empire Justice Center Letter of Support for Bill to Protect DV Victims' Confidentiality
A.3468/ S.4334c would automatically require a court to temporarily order the sealing and safeguarding of a name change applicant’s identifying information, pleadings and other court records after a case is commenced under Civil Rights Law §64-a. Read More

Alliance for Healthy Homes Letter of Support for Lead Poisoning Primary Prevention Act
The Alliance for Health Homes urges Governor Paterson to sign into law the Childhood Lead Poisoning Primary Prevention and Safe Housing Act of 2008. Read More

Letter of Support - Childhood Lead Poisoning Primary Prevention Act
Approval of this bill (A.6399c/S.6350b) is critically important for New York State and especially for the children in the most impoverished sections of its urban areas. Read More

United Way Lettter of Support for A6399c/S6350b - Sign the Childhood Lead Poisoning Primary Prevention Act Into Law
The United Way urges Governor Paterson to sign into law this legislation which will prevent thousands of New York’s children from being lead poisoned each year. Read More

Empire Justice Letter of Support for The Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Act
This long overdue legislation is critical to correcting a matter of gross environmental, racial and economic injustice, namely that the state’s minority and low-income children remain at far greater risk of lead poisoning than non-minority children in non-poverty areas. Read More

The Children’s Defense Fund of NY Letter of Support for the Childhood Lead Poisoning Primary Prevention Act
This legislation would build upon existing programs to require the state to maximize its resources by targeting the areas in the state with the greatest number of lead poisoned children; creating and implementing local prevention plans that fit the needs and resources of impacted communities; and provide modest resources for property owners to address lead hazards in housing. Read More

Alliance For Healthy Homes Letter of Support
Support letter from Patrick MacRoy, Executive Director of Alliance for Health Homes regarding The Childhood Lead Poisoning Primary Prevention and Safe Housing Act of 2008. Read More

Empire Justice Letter in Support - Help New York Avoid Preventable Foreclosures
A letter written in full support of Assembly 10817a\Senate 8143a. This strong piece of legislation will help keep thousands of New York homeowners from losing their homes to foreclosure, as well as insure that New York homeowners are protected from many of the worst lending abuses in the subprime industry that lead to the current crisis. Read More

Empire Justice Letter of Support - Require the Supreme Court to Assign Counsel
A 2006 letter to the Governor addressing legislation that would require the Supreme Court to assign counsel to indigent litigants when the proceeding is one over which the Family Court also has jurisdiction and there was a right to counsel, such as custody and family offense matters. (A.10447/S.8096) Read More