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Policy Matters October 2016


The air is getting colder, the leaves have fallen, and we’re prepping for the cold by gathering our staff to develop our policy agenda for 2017.  All indicators promise another exciting legislative session, and another chance for legislators to join us in making the law work for all New Yorkers.

Domestic Violence
October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and Empire Justice staff showed their support on Purple Thursday.

The National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs released a report documenting the unique ways intimate partner violence impacts LGBTQ and HIV-affected communities.

Our Senior Attorney Amy Schwartz-Wallace teamed up with Sandra Park from the ACLU’s Women’s Rights Project and Kate Lockhart from the Western New York Law Center to talk about how nuisance ordinances impact domestic violence survivors at The Neighborhood Preservation Coalition of New York State’s Housing is Key conference.

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is in the process of adopting rules for payday lending, and more than 100 House Democrats signed onto a letter urging a strong rule.  This practice is banned in New York State, but we must always be vigilant to make sure that rules aren’t adopted that would diminish the progress we’ve made here.

Despite all that the CFPB does to help Americans, a recent US Court of Appeals decision says it doesn’t have the authority to protect consumers.

Zombies.  Zombies everywhere.  The Monroe County Task Force on Vacant and Abandoned Properties issued a report called “Zombies Among Us.”  Senior Attorney Rebecca Caico co-chairs the Task Force.

We provided comments on the Peoples United bank merger on Long Island to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.

Public Benefits
The Home Stability Support Plan will keep families warm and in their homes.  Just like this article from the Democrat & Chronicle says- reducing poverty is economic development.

Attorney Emeritus Barbara Weiner talked about the impact of TANF on immigrants in our ongoing TANF at 20 Blog Series.

The Supreme Court would not rehear the DACA+/DAPA case, which would have brought relief to 5 million Americans.

Marlene Cortes, our Foreclosure Prevention Paralegal, graduated from the Latino Leadership Program.  Way to go, Marlene!

Finally, there’s a proposed rule, which we are (of course) supporting, that would allow young transgender Medicaid recipients access to medically necessary health care.

The Center for Responsible Lending analyzed HMDA data, showing that communities of color continue to be excluded from affordable mortgages.  This is on top of the institutional racism and redlining going on in some communities.

That’s it for now!  Stay tuned for our State Policy Agenda!

The Policy Team at Empire Justice Center


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