New York City Council Header
File #: Res 1324-2020    Version: * Name: DOE to partner with nonprofit organizations to provide on-site pro bono legal assistance at schools to help students and their families with housing issues.
Type: Resolution Status: Committee
Committee: Committee on Education
On agenda: 5/28/2020
Enactment date: Law number:
Title: Resolution calling on the New York City Department of Education to partner with nonprofit organizations to provide on-site pro bono legal assistance at schools to help students and their families with housing issues.
Sponsors: Farah N. Louis, Robert E. Cornegy, Jr., Mark Treyger, Ben Kallos, Margaret S. Chin
Council Member Sponsors: 5
Attachments: 1. Res. No. 1324, 2. Hearing Transcript - Stated Meeting 5-28-20, 3. May 28, 2020 - Stated Meeting Agenda with Links to Files, 4. Minutes of the Stated Meeting - May 28, 2020

Res. No. 1324

 

Resolution calling on the New York City Department of Education to partner with nonprofit organizations to provide on-site pro bono legal assistance at schools to help students and their families with housing issues.

 

By Council Members Louis, Cornegy, Treyger, Kallos and Chin

 

Whereas, Ten percent of students in New York City lacked stable housing in 2019, according to a report by Advocates for Children; and

Whereas, Shelter providers estimate more than 22,000 children in New York City sleep in homeless shelters each night; and

Whereas, Instability in living situations and homelessness negatively impacts student performance and achievement; and

Whereas, Lacking stable housing often prevents students from being engaged in class or coming to school at all on a consistent basis; and

Whereas, Almost two-thirds of students who live in shelters are chronically absent from school, according to Advocates for Children; and

Whereas, The national graduation rate for homeless students is approximately twenty percent lower than the graduation rate for students overall, according to the National Center for Homeless Education; and

Whereas, New York City dedicates significant resources to provide supports to students who are homeless, or students living in temporary housing, including additional school coordinators and social workers to help families with enrollment, getting immunizations and school records, and arranging transportation to and from school, among other things; and

Whereas, School staff have additionally devoted extra time outside of school to help students who are struggling with housing problems, by doing activities such as accompanying students to seek temporary shelter or picking up students to go to school; and

Whereas, New York City public schools have experienced positive results partnering with nonprofit organizations to provide greater opportunities and supports for students and families who need assistance, such as in community schools where nonprofit partners work to provide food assistance and health and social services supports for students and their families; and

Whereas, Schools partnering with nonprofit organizations to provide on-site pro bono legal assistance to students and families to help with housing-related problems has proved to be beneficial to students and families in areas outside of New York City, such as in Atlanta, Georgia, where thousands of youth are also estimated to be either homeless or lacking stable housing according to the 2018 Atlanta Youth Count; and

Whereas, The nonprofit Atlanta Volunteer Lawyers Foundation has described how its program “Standing with Our Neighbors” has helped hundreds of families and children by providing on-site assistance with housing-related problems in at least eight schools, resulting in children staying in school longer without moving and experiencing less eviction and displacement; and

Whereas, In the past the New York City Council has acknowledged its commitment to providing support for low-income New Yorkers experiencing housing struggles by enacting local law 136 of 2017 to provide legal services in housing court for low-income tenants who are subject to eviction proceedings, and on-site pro bono legal assistance at schools would provide additional needed support for low-income New Yorkers experiencing such housing struggles; now, therefore, be it

Resolved, That the Council of the City of New York calls on the New York City Department of Education to partner with nonprofit organizations to provide on-site pro bono legal assistance at schools to help students and their families with housing-related problems.

 

 

 

 

 

LS #14288

5/18/20

JB