eNewsletter - May 2013

            
LAF Logo
 LAF eNews Update
May 2013 
EQUAL JUSTICE STARTS HERE. 
In This Newsletter
 
Visit the redesigned
LAF website!
Go to www.lafchicago.org and check it out!
 
Meet Tim Hufman:  The Jerold S. Solovy Award Winner in 2013 
 
Tim Hufman, LAF Supervisory Attorney 
 
Each year at the Annual Luncheon, LAF awards the Jerold S. Solovy Equal Justice Award to one of our attorneys who goes above and beyond in their dedication to our clients.  This year’s award will be given to Tim Hufman. 
 
Tim came to LAF in 1983 as a volunteer in our Blue Island office.  From there, he spent time in our offices in Englewood, the West Side, Uptown, and the South Side before the big move to our new centralized downtown office.   He is a Supervisory Attorney in LAF’s Housing Practice Group, where his work focuses on clients in subsidized housing, fighting unfair evictions and administrative termination of housing vouchers. 
 
The people Tim’s supervised over the years talk about how he brought out the best in them, and never let them feel alone or at sea.  One of them, who nominated him for this award, explained, “Tim never seems to run out of energy and strength when it comes to helping other people, clients and colleagues alike.  Also, he seems always to be running to get wherever he is going.  There simply isn’t enough time in the day for walking when you are Tim Hufman.”
 
Talking about why the work of LAF is important to him, Tim said that the cases he finds most significant are not dramatic, but “I find myself stumbling across individuals whose perseverance and strength are inspiring.”  He spoke of a gentleman in his late 90's, who somehow raised ten children and, “with great dignity endured the incredible disappointment of a contractor who tore up his only asset, his home, and then exhibited enduring patience and willingness to keep on going, to live his life, while the case was in litigation over the next six years.  He was admirable.  I enjoyed that,” Tim added with a smile. 
 
“That’s the kind of person I’ll go pretty far to assist,” he explained.  “They’ve done all they can do, those are the ones that motivate me to do all I can do now to help them.” 
 
Lots of things have changed at LAF in the last few years.  The thing that will never change is the need for people like Tim, who has given thousands of clients the chance to get back on their feet.  Congratulations. 
 
Visit the redesigned LAF website!
and check it out!
 
Contribute to LAF Now!
Donate Button
Support LAF today with a
tax-deductible donation
 
Diana
 
  
 
 
A special message
from LAF
Executive Director
Diana C. White
 
 
 
Back in 2010, LAF started its journey with the Taproot Foundation, an organization that leverages professionals in design, marketing, IT, management, and HR, through pro bono volunteer work to serve nonprofit groups.  They first helped us develop our new name, taking us from the Legal Assistance Foundation of Metropolitan Chicago to simply the LAF you’ve always known, and then helped us develop our new green logo and visual identity. Most recently, we worked on our third round of Taproot-assisted identity formation for a new website design, with a team of amazing volunteers that included Tom Harrison, Natalie Rauch, David Oei, Mark Rumble, and Valerie Concepcion.  
 
And finally, just this month, we’ve completed our brand new website.  You can visit it at www.lafchicago.org.  We’re so excited about it, and we hope this new site will be cleaner to look at, easier to use, and more effective for communicating with clients and the community. With the new website design, we’ve also launched a blog, to help tell our stories better.  You can visit the blog at http://lafchicago.wordpress.com/, or by clicking the link at the top of the website. Have a look around both and enjoy!
 
On behalf of the staff, the Board, and the clients we serve here at LAF, thank you for your generosity and support as we've gone through these changes.  As always, I'm grateful for your input and would love to hear your feedback.  You can reach me any time at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . Thank you.  
 
Best,
 
Diana C. White
LAF Executive Director
 
 
Visit the redesigned LAF website!
Go to www.lafchicago.org and check it out!
 
Contribute to LAF Now!
Donate Button
Support LAF today with a tax-deductible donation
 
 
Support Veterans for Memorial Day! 
Donate to LAF's Veterans Rights Project
and help us earn a challenge grant
 
Please join us in supporting LAF’s Veterans’ Rights Project this Memorial Day.  This year the Veterans’ Rights Project is a participant in the Memorial Day Veterans Charity Challenge.  The Project has a chance to win a special challenge grant if it finishes the Challenge as one of the Top 3 charities, and the charity that raises the most by Tuesday will win an additional $5,000!  
 
 
LAF’s Veterans’ Rights Project is dedicated to ensure that low-income service members, veterans, and their dependents residing in Cook County receive advocacy and educational services regarding the enforcement of their legal rights and benefits.  Since November 2011, LAF has provided legal services to over 900 veterans in Cook County. LAF has the unique ability to provide comprehensive legal assistance for veterans with multiple legal problems, including veterans’ benefits and discharge upgrades.
 
 
LAF's Annual Luncheon is less than a month away! 
Join us on Tuesday, June 18th, 2013
 
LAF's Annual Luncheon is our largest fundraising event of the year. Please join us on Tuesday, June 18th, at the Palmer House Hilton to support our work.  This year, our Champion for Justice Award will be presented to Brinks, Hofer, Gilson & Lione for the firm's longstanding and deep commitment to LAF and LAF’s clients, and our Jerold S. Solovy Award will be presented to Tim Hufman, for his dedication to the work of LAF.  You can read more about Tim in the sidebar profile section of this eNewsletter.  
 
Tickets, tables, and sponsorships are available for online purchase now.  You can purchase them here, or by sending a check to LAF, Attn: External Relations Department, 120 S. LaSalle St. Ste. 900, Chicago, IL 60603, or by calling 312-347-8370.  
 
LAF holds Chicago Housing Authority 
to its promises for Cabrini-Green
With partner Sidley Austin LLP, LAF files a federal lawsuit against CHA to keep public housing
 
On Thursday, May 16th, the Cabrini-Green Local Advisory Council (LAC) filed a federal lawsuit against the Chicago Housing Authority in an effort to compel CHA to honor its promise to maintain the Francis Cabrini Rowhouses on Chicago’s North Side as 100% public housing. The LAC announced the suit at a press conference at its office at 530 W. Locust.
 
LAF Attorneys Lizzie Rosenthal and Lea Weems, along with
Cabrini-Green residents, at the May 16th Press Conference
 
After announcing that it would rehabilitate the Rowhouses as part of its Plan for Transformation, CHA moved existing residents out by relocating some families to developments on Chicago’s South Side and issuing temporary housing vouchers to others. Almost all the displaced families found themselves in racially and economically segregated neighborhoods with limited opportunities, waiting to return to the Rowhouses — as promised — when the rehabilitation work was done. 

CHA rehabilitated one-quarter of the 586 units, but has now announced that it will convert the Rowhouses into a mixed-income development with only a small percentage of the units reserved for public housing residents. 

“What the CHA has either failed or refused to recognize is that it doesn’t need to exclude even one public housing resident to create a ‘mixed-income’ community at the Rowhouses, which are in a desirable location and economically diverse area,” said Carol Steele, LAC President. “All public housing residents are now subject to a work requirement, and 50% of new admissions must make more than $22,000 a year for a family of four. That same family can make up to $59,000 a year while remaining financially eligible for public housing.” 

The negative impact of CHA’s new plan is extensive and includes the following:
    •  Eliminating hundreds of units of low-income housing on Chicago’s North Side, thereby depriving deserving families of access to good schools, transportation, and jobs.
    •  Forcing families that formerly lived in the Rowhouses, an area ripe with opportunity, to remain in high-poverty, segregated areas of Chicago because their right to return has evaporated. 

“The CHA’s plan violates the most basic sense of fairness on every level, and it is also illegal,” said Elizabeth Rosenthal of LAF, attorney for the LAC. “CHA has a well-established statutory duty to affirmatively further fair housing, but its new plan only perpetuates segregation.” 

The Cabrini-Green Local Advisory Council is represented by LAF and Sidley Austin, LLP.
  
 
 
Visit the redesigned LAF website!
Go to www.lafchicago.org and check it out!
 
Contribute to LAF Now!
Donate Button
Support LAF today with a tax-deductible donation
 
 
  
 
LAF
EQUAL JUSTICE STARTS HERE.
 
Each year, LAF impacts 40,000 lives by providing free legal help to resolve issues like domestic violence, consumer fraud, and unfair evictions. We make equal justice a reality and get people back on track.  We rely on private donations to fulfill our mission.
 
 

 

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