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Newsletters

Each month, NHLP publishes a newsletter on a variety of current housing issues that affect survivors of domestic and sexual violence. Past issues of the newsletter are available here.

Spring-Summer 2017 Newsletter

This newsletter summarizes the U.S. Department of Agriculture's January 2017 notice regarding VAWA 2013 implementation in the agency's Rural Development and Multi-Family Housing programs. Additionally, the newsletter briefly discusses HUD steps to implement VAWA 2013, including issuing the final VAWA 2013 rule and subsequent guidance. The newsletter also provides an overview of guidance issued by HUD's Office of Special Needs Assistance Programs (SNAPS) regarding immigrant eligibility for homeless assistance programs. Finally, the newsletter highlights three recent lawsuits: two of these lawsuits challenge local nuisance ordinances, and the third lawsuit challenges eviction screening policies due to their impact on African-American women.

January - March 2017

This newsletter highlights HUD's rule implementing VAWA 2013, which was effective December 16, 2016; discusses a HUD/HHS/DOJ joint letter reiterating federal policy on immigrants' rights to access programs to protect life or safety; covers a VAWA amendment that strengthens housing protections for survivors; and summarizes a series of HUD regulations and guidances on fair housing and equal access.

Spring-Summer 2016 Newsletter

This newsletter describes a settlement that a domestic violence survivor reached with a public housing authority in Illinois for allegedly refusing to repair her unit after she had been severely burned in a fire set by the abuser; a settlement that a survivor reached with the City of Surprise, Arizona to repeal a nuisance ordinance; a lawsuit filed by the U.S. Department of Justice against landlords in West Virginia for allegedly sexually harassing tenants; and resources on LGBT homelessness issues for HUD-funded service providers.

November-December 2015 Newsletter

This newsletter provides brief summaries of recent HUD developments on several housing issues. Specifically, HUD has: (1) issued a final regulation that defines “chronically homeless”; (2) proposed a regulation concerning harassment in housing and liability under the Fair Housing Act (FHA); (3) proposed a regulation concerning access to shelters and other facilities funded by HUD’s Community Planning and Development (CPD) programs consistent with individuals’ gender identity; and (4) issued guidance stating that arrest records alone cannot be the basis for housing decisions in federally subsidized housing. (Note to OVW Grantees: The Office of Violence Against Women, U.S. Department of Justice, does not handle issues regarding sexual harassment.)

September-October 2015 Newsletter

This newsletter announces the release of NHLP's 2015 edition of Housing Rights for Domestic Violence Survivors: A State and Local Law Compendium and summarizes a lawsuit filed by a domestic violence survivor against a municipality in Arizona. In the complaint, the survivor alleges that the city's nuisance laws violated fair housing laws as well as federal and state constitutional laws when they were enforced against the plaintiff-survivor for contacting the police for protection against domestic violence.

August 2015 Newsletter

This newsletter features summaries of HUD's most recent notice on anti-discrimination protections for LGBT individuals and families accessing and maintaining HUD-assisted and -insured programs as well as a Notice of Funding Availability for HUD's VAWA-HOPWA Demonstration Project.

June-July 2015 Newsletter

This issue summarizes key aspects of a policy brief by HUD on the coordinated entry process that may be helpful for advocates working with survivors on accessing housing. The newsletter further highlights a conciliation agreement between HUD and the City of Berlin, NH mandating the City to amend an ordinance, which required landlords to evict tenants cited three or more times for “disorderly behavior", to exempt domestic violence survivors.

May 2015 Newsletter

This issue summarizes a new report released by the Vera Institute of Justice concerning the need to improve access to services for domestic and sexual violence survivors within the Deaf community.

April 2015 Newsletter

This issue covers HUD's release of a proposed rule that would implement VAWA 2013; two notices issued by HUD that provide guidance concerning the Equal Access Rule; and military sexual trauma as a barrier to housing for female veterans.

March 2015 Newsletter

This issue features a summary of USDA Rural Development's (RD) revised notice concerning VAWA 2013 implementation and a lawsuit filed by a survivor in Louisiana against her landlord for allegedly evicting her and her son under a zero-tolerance policy after her ex-boyfriend attacked her in her apartment.

January-February 2015 Newsletter

This newsletter includes an overview of survivors’ rights in rental housing as well as a summary of a report from the U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics concerning domestic violence trends.

December 2014 Newsletter

This newsletter explores the question of whether there are laws that prevent a landlord from refusing to rent to a survivor of domestic or sexual violence explicitly because of violence committed against him or her. Additionally, this month's newsletter outlines protections for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) survivors under the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013 and other legal authorities such as the HUD Equal Access Rule and the Fair Housing Act.

November 2014 Newsletter

This newsletter discusses a recent HUD charge of discrimination filed against a housing provider for attempting to evict a domestic violence survivor because she was attacked by her abuser. HUD has alleged that the landlord discriminated against the survivor on the basis of sex, in violation of the Fair Housing Act. Additionally, the newsletter provides an overview of a recent survey where considerable knowledge gaps were discovered concerning the rights of immigrant survivors to access transitional housing.

October 2014 Newsletter

This newsletter describes settlements in two important cases. In the first case, Briggs v. Norristown, a domestic violence survivor challenged an ordinance that penalized landlords with tenants who called the police too many times during a certain period. The ordinance did not have an exception for domestic violence survivors seeking police protection from their abusers. The second case, United States v. VanderVennen, involved a landlord who allegedly engaged in a pattern of sexually harassing female tenants. This month's publication discusses the background and settlement terms for these cases. (Note to OVW Grantees: The Office of Violence Against Women, U.S. Department of Justice, does not handle issues regarding sexual harassment.)

September 2014 Newsletter

This newsletter features a Q&A about HUD's recent notice to public housing authorities (PHAs) regarding implementation of the Equal Access Rule, which prohibits LGBT discrimination in HUD programs. Additionally, the newsletter also includes a summary of recent updates to the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness' PHA Guidebook to Ending Homelessness, which now reflects the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013 and advises PHAs on how to serve the housing needs of survivors.

July-August 2014 Newsletter
This newsletter discusses the updated VAWA 2013 self-certification form issued by HUD's Office of Public and Indian Housing; a survivor's settlements against New Hampshire landlords involving alleged housing denials because of domestic violence-related 911 calls made by the survivor; and a DOJ settlement with a housing provider in California involving claims of discrimination against families with children.

June 2014 Newsletter
This newsletter announces the release of NHLP's 2014 edition of “Housing Rights of Domestic Violence Survivors: A State and Local Law Compendium.” It also includes an article summarizing a series of HUD conciliation agreements entered into by Bank of America and several women alleging lending discrimination due to maternity leave in violation of the Fair Housing Act.

May 2014 Newsletter
This newsletter discusses a conciliation agreement between a survivor and a property management company in Florida that denied housing to the survivor because she did not provide the Social Security numbers of her minor children due to safety concerns related to domestic violence. It further covers a settlement of a lawsuit filed by ten survivors alleging that the NYC Housing Authority allowed apartment applications from survivors of domestic violence to remain unresolved for months and years.

March-April 2014 Newsletter
This newsletter summarizes and discusses USDA Rural Development's notice to RD state directors and program directors of RD Multifamily Housing Programs regarding VAWA 2013's housing provisions.

February 2014 Newsletter
This newsletter covers two anti-discrimination cases - One filed by a survivor of sexual harassment in which a Washington state court for the first time applied the state's anti-discrimination law to sexual harassment that occurred in a housing context. The other lawsuit involved a survivor of domestic violence who sued a local housing authority for forcing her to leave her public housing unit due to the violence committed against her and for preventing her from renting elsewhere by providing a negative reference to prospective landlords.

January 2014 Newsletter
This newsletter discusses whether the Fair Housing Act applies to shelters and further covers a HUD notice seeking comments on revising an expiring VAWA certification form, Form HUD-50066. In addition, it highlights a HUD newsletter reiterating VAWA 2013's coverage of HOME-funded programs.

December 2013 Newsletter
This newsletter includes an article on a study, which found that African-American women in Milwaukee were evicted at higher rates than other groups of people.

November 2013 Newsletter
This newsletter covers a settlement of a lawsuit in California against a landlord in favor of tenants who were sexually harassed by the building's staff, a study indicating that children are a risk factor for eviction and a letter that HUD sent to housing authorities concerning implementation of VAWA 2013's housing provisions.

October 2013 Newsletter
This newsletter discusses two notices issued by HUD that impact survivors and their advocates. The first article covers HUD's notice that provides guidance to multifamily housing owners on how they can adopt admissions preferences for the homeless. The second article addresses a notice from HUD's Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity that clarifies the definition of "assistance animals" under civil rights laws.

August-September 2013 Newsletter
This newsletter includes articles on HUD's notice concerning the applicability of VAWA 2013 to HUD programs, housing protections for survivors with limited English proficiency as well as a response to a technical assistance question regarding survivors facing evictions or subsidy terminations because of damage to the unit caused by the abuser. There is also a link to a Q and A (available in English and Spanish) for survivors with criminal records accessing federally assisted housing.

July 2013 Newsletter
This newsletter discusses a case filed in federal court challenging a nuisance ordinance in Norristown, Pennsylvania that punishes survivors for contacting the police. It also details a report documenting the obstacles that survivors with limited English proficiency face seeking police protection.

June 2013 Newsletter
This newsletter addresses how advocates can work with state financing agencies to improve survivors' access to Low-Income Housing Tax Credit housing.

April-May 2013 Newsletter
This newsletter includes articles summarizing the key housing provisions of the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013 and HUD's Disparate Impact Rule.

March 2013 Newsletter
This newsletter discusses best practices in controlling bedbugs for advocates and housing providers as well as technical assistance questions pertaining to who covers the cost of lock changes and evictions from shelters.

February 2013 Newsletter
This newsletter provides an update on the reauthorization of VAWA and covers HUD's conciliation agreement with a Virginia property management company that had a policy of requiring applicants to speak English.

January 2013 Newsletter
This newsletter addresses how public housing authorities should handle conflicting claims of domestic violence under VAWA, Alaska's rental assistance program for survivors of domestic and sexual violence, and a technical assistance question concerning whether sexual assault survivors are eligible for HUD's homelessness programs.

December 2012 Newsletter
This newsletter discusses relocation for survivors of domestic and sexual violence living in public housing. It also summarizes a case in which a domestic violence survivor faced termination of her Section 8 voucher for having an unauthorized person staying in her home.

October 2012 Newsletter
This newsletter summarizes a recent court decision involving zoning of a domestic violence shelter. It also discusses fair housing protections for shelter residents.

September 2012 Newsletter
This newsletter discusses subsidized housing waiting lists, family breakup in the Section 8 voucher program, and the Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing program.

August 2012 Newsletter
This newsletter discusses guidance from the Department of Housing and Urban Development regarding housing discrimination against immigrants. It also addresses a $2 million settlement in a case involving sexual harassment of tenants.

June-July 2012 Newsletter
This newsletter provides an overview of the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit program. It also discusses recent HUD guidance on tenant contact information and the status of the Violence Against Women Act reauthorization.

May 2012 Newsletter
This newsletter discusses the Senate’s passage of the Violence Against Women Act reauthorization, including housing protections for survivors of domestic and sexual violence. It also summarizes the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s guidance on language access. Finally, it reviews questions regarding the right of domestic violence survivors to move with Section 8 vouchers.

April 2012 Newsletter
This newsletter discusses new Department of Housing and Urban Development regulations that could improve families’ ability to relocate. It also summarizes a court’s ruling that women in an affordable housing project can pursue a fair housing case against a developer that is allegedly harassing and intimidating them. Finally, it examines the Department of Justice’s investigation into language access in the North Carolina courts.

March 2012 Newsletter
This newsletter addresses the Department of Housing and Urban Development's efforts to investigate the eviction of a domestic violence survivor. It also summarizes the findings of the National Census of Domestic Violence Services. Finally, it discusses the innovative programs and services offered to survivors by the District Alliance for Safe Housing.

February 2012 Newsletter
This newsletter discusses a recent study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on intimate partner and sexual violence. It also reviews a new Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) regulation that prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity in HUD programs. Finally, it examines recent developments affecting struggling homeowners at risk of foreclosure.

January 2012 Newsletter
This newsletter discusses new regulations affecting the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) homelessness programs. The newsletter also reviews a HUD rule that clarifies the agency’s definition of homelessness. Finally, it examines HUD’s proposed rules on Homeless Management Information Systems requirements.

December 2011 Newsletter
This newsletter discusses legislation that would extend VAWA’s housing protections to additional federally subsidized housing programs. It also discusses a Housing First program created by the Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence. Finally, it reviews whether domestic violence survivors can get admissions preferences when applying for public housing or Section 8.

November 2011 Newsletter
This newsletter discusses a complaint filed by a domestic violence survivor with the Department of Housing and Urban Development after she was denied housing. It also discusses Baltimore advocates’ efforts to improve the availability of emergency shelter for women.

October 2011 Newsletter
This newsletter discusses a recent case where a court reversed a Section 8 voucher termination for a tenant who failed to report child support. It also examines a case where a court found that an agency could challenge sexual harassment in public housing. Finally, it reviews social security number requirements for people applying for Section 8.

September 2011 Newsletter
This newsletter addresses recent HUD guidance on non-discrimination and equal opportunity requirements for public housing agencies. It also discusses a recent case involving the housing protections of the Violence Against Women Act, as well as a case involving reinstatement of a Section 8 voucher tenant’s assistance where there were conflicting claims of domestic violence.

July/August 2011 Newsletter
This newsletter addresses recent HUD guidance on access to federally subsidized housing for formerly incarcerated persons. It also summarizes a report examining the first year of the Homelessness Prevention and Rapid Rehousing Program (HPRP).

June 2011 Newsletter
This newsletter addresses procedural protections for domestic violence survivors facing loss of their subsidized housing. It also summarizes recent guidance from the Department of Housing and Urban Development regarding credit history checks for individuals with disabilities who are applying for subsidized housing.

May 2011 Newsletter
This newsletter covers the right of tenants to relocate while they are receiving Section 8 voucher assistance. It also summarizes recent guidance from the Department of Education on addressing sexual violence in schools.

April 2011 Newsletter
This newsletter covers recent cases involving sexual harassment in housing; homelessness prevention and rapid rehousing strategies for domestic violence survivors; and the 2010 domestic violence census.

March 2011 Newsletter
This newsletter addresses the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s recent guidance on the fair housing rights of domestic violence survivors. It also discusses a domestic violence survivor’s lawsuit to challenge the termination of her Section 8 voucher. Additionally, it summarizes a letter that directs federal agencies to reassess their efforts to serve limited English proficient individuals.

February 2011 Newsletter
This newsletter examines proposed regulations that would prevent housing discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. The newsletter also discusses rental payment history information that is now being included in some credit reports.

January 2011 Newsletter
This newsletter examines survivors’ rights in subsidized housing when the family breaks up due to domestic violence. The newsletter also reviews a case involving a domestic violence survivor with a service animal who sought an exception to a housing provider’s pet policy.

December 2010 Newsletter
Topics include the White House's new initiatives to prevent
domestic violence. The newsletter also provides an overview of
regulations recently issued by the Department of Housing and Urban
Development regarding domestic violence and housing.

November 2010 Newsletter
Topics include recently enacted state laws from California, Illinois, Maryland, Michigan, and Texas that provide housing protections for domestic violence survivors. The newsletter also discusses the Department of Housing and Urban Development's new Emergency Homeowner Loan Program.

October 2010 Newsletter
Topics include Department of Justice guidance on meaningful language access in the courts; a report examining the housing needs of sexual violence survivors; and a jury verdict in a case in which a property manager sexually harassed female tenants.

September 2010 Newsletter
Topics include a case in which a domestic violence survivor’s Section 8 voucher was reinstated, a study on housing options for domestic violence survivors in South America, and the availability of housing vouchers designed to preserve family unity.

August 2010 Newsletter
Topics include anti-discrimination protections for LGBT individuals, strategies for assisting survivors who need to break their leases, and a sexual harassment in housing case settled by the Department of Justice.

July 2010 Newsletter
Topics include the Obama Administration’s national plan to end homelessness, recent litigation regarding sexual harassment in housing, and a case involving termination of a dating violence survivor’s Section 8 voucher.

June 2010 Newsletter
Topics include the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s proposals to transform its rental assistance programs and to implement changes to its definition of homelessness.

May 2010 Newsletter
Topics include housing obstacles encountered by domestic violence survivors who have criminal history, and the rules that apply to subsidized housing applicants who have criminal records.

April 2010 Newsletter
Topics include language access in housing for survivors who have limited English proficiency, and housing assistance for families with mixed immigration status.

March 2010 Newsletter
Topics include how advocates can help survivors of domestic violence to address negative credit and rental history and an overview of the findings of the National Census of Domestic Violence Services.

February 2010 Newsletter
Topics include an update on the Homelessness Prevention and Rapid Re-Housing Program and the fiscal year 2011 federal budget to combat violence against women.

January 2010 Newsletter
Topics include an overview of the immigration restrictions that apply to federally subsidized housing and a discussion of the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s final rule on disclosure of Social Security Numbers.

December 2009 Newsletter
Topics include HUD regulations regarding Social Security Numbers, HUD’s efforts to insure inclusion of the LGBT community in its programs, and a new HUD form that may protect survivors’ safety in housing.

November 2009 Newsletter
Topics include Part III of NHLP's series on advocating for housing authority policies that serve domestic violence survivors' needs, and frequently asked questions regarding the Homelessness Prevention and Rapid Re-Housing Program.

October 2009 Newsletter
Topics include Part II of NHLP's series on advocating for housing authority policies that serve domestic violence survivors' needs.

September 2009 Newsletter
Topics include an introduction to using the public housing authority planning process to advance survivors' housing rights.

August 2009 Newsletter
This newsletter contains articles on the rights of survivors to relocate within federally subsidized housing and public housing.

July 2009 Newsletter
This newsletter includes articles on Safety Planning and Housing and HUD's clarification of requirements placed on Victim Service Providers who receive Recovery Funds. It also announces the appointment of Lynn Rosenthal as the White House Advisor on Violence Against Women.

June 2009 Newsletter
This newsletter provides a brief description of the federal housing programs and explains how to find the housing in your communities.

May 2009 Newsletter
Topics include common housing issues faced by survivors with disabilities, and how advocates can use reasonable accommodation requests to address these issues.

April 2009 Newsletter
Topics include the Fair Housing Act and its application to tenants who have experienced discrimination based on acts of domestic violence committed against them.

March 2009 Newsletter
Topics include rights and remedies of tenants who have been sexually harassed in their rental housing.

February 2009 Newsletter
Topics include state law housing protections for survivors and Metro N. Owners LLC v. Thorpe, a case holding that VAWA protected a survivor from eviction after she was attacked in her unit.

January 2009 Newsletter
Topics include an introduction to VAWA’s housing provisions and how those provisions have been implemented by the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

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