April 04, 2018

Homeless Youth Legal Network Pro Bono

ABA HYLN Pro Bono

<i>A new ABA initiative aimed at increasing legal services and improving outcomes for youth and young adults experiencing homelessness.</i>

If you are interested in potentially participating in this free project or would simply like to learn more about it, please email HYLNprobono@americanbar.org or call Kelly Russo at (202) 662-1699.

Dear Advocates and Providers,

The American Bar Association is thrilled to announce a new project aimed at removing legal barriers for youth and young adults served by homeless service providers throughout the United States.  We invite your program to participate in this free project which we hope will assist you in meeting the legal needs of your clients.

HYLN Pro Bono will encourage and equip the more than 400,000 members of the ABA plus lawyers across the United States to volunteer at local homeless youth shelters and drop-in centers to provide free legal services to youth and young adults. The ABA's HYLN Hotline will provide additional connectivity and support to legal services lawyers, pro bono lawyers, youth and providers. 

Volunteer lawyers will collaborate with shelter staff to determine the best approach to legal assistance. Options include:

• Direct representation of individual youth with urgent legal needs such as questions about criminal cases, denial of public benefits, school expulsion, etc.

• Live legal clinics to represent groups of youth who all have similar legal needs, including obtaining identification documents, applications for college funding, expungement of records, immigration status, consumer issues, etc.

• Live legal education or "Know Your Rights" presentations to teach youth about important issues such as rights in foster care, rights as employees/ job applicants, options for federal funding for college, etc.

Our goal is to match shelters, drop-in centers and other homeless youth providers with lawyers who are local and equipped to help.

Our request to you is to tell us if you want to match your organization with volunteer lawyers. If you are interested in potentially participating in this free project or would simply like to learn more about it, please email HYLNprobono@americanbar.org or call Kelly Russo at (202) 662-1699.

We are excited about this project and hopeful that together we will address the many unmet legal needs of homeless youth and young adults.  We look forward to working with you!

ABA Resources:

Pro Bono Primer for Volunteer Lawyers

Burning Down the House: The Myths Around Youth Homelessness in America
This program is a dynamic discussion about what youth homelessness looks like in the United States and how the provision of legal services to homeless youth can dramatically improve their outcomes.
Hilarie Bass, President-Elect, ABA (moderator)
Eve Stotland, Legal Services Center, The Door
Courtney Smith, National Network for Youth
Gabriella C. McDonald, Texas Appleseed
Casey Trupin, Raikes Foundation

What Every Children's Lawyer Should Know About Advocating for Homeless Youth
Presented at the 2017 National Association of Counsel for Children Conference
Brian Blalock, Tipping Point Community
Jenny Pokempner, Juvenile Law Center
Serena Holthe, National Juvenile Deferender Center

What Every Children's Lawyer Should Know about Advocating for Homeless Youth
Presented at the 2017 Center on Children and the Law Conference
Brian Blalock, Tipping Point Community
Casey Trupin, Raikes Foundation
Michael Santos, National Law Center on Homelessness & Poverty

Other Resources:

Baker McKenzie Homeless Youth Handbooks

Support the ABA Homeless Youth Legal Network by making your gift online today!

donate.americanbar.org/homelessness

As a 501(c)(3) charitable fund, all contributions are tax deductible to the full extent allowed by law.

Thank you to the lawyers and providers affiliated with the newly launched pro bono partnerships in the following communities:

Washington, DC

Los Angeles, CA

San Francisco, CA

Fort Lauderdale, FL

Gainesville, FL

Jacksonville, FL

Miami, FL

Orlando, FL

West Palm Beach, FL

Atlanta, GA

Morristown, NJ

Chicago, IL

Northern VA