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Bill Powers Advocacy Fund

Supporting cutting edge advocacy for tenants’ rights The National Housing Law Project established the Bill Powers Advocacy Fund in 2021 to honor Bill who passed away on November 25, 2020. He was a beloved member of the NHLP staff during his housing career. Bill was a remarkable person, an activist at heart. He genuinely cared about people and acknowledged the value of each person he met. He got a bachelor’s degree from La Salle University and became involved in affordable housing development. After working for the Philadelphia Housing Development Corporation, he spent 10 years commuting to Washington DC to work for the Housing Assistance Council, addressing housing needs in rural America. During his DC years, he also became a lobbyist... Read More »

NHLP Statement on HUD’s Publication of its Proposed Changes Regarding Disparate Impact

On August 19, the Trump Administration put forth another proposal that undermines our basic civil rights protections. Disparate impact is a core legal principle that protects people from unlawful discrimination. HUD’s proposal will essentially gut this important legal tool. HUD’s proposed rule would allow policies and practices which discriminate against people based on race, disability, gender, and a range of other factors to go unchecked. Housing discrimination has contributed to income inequality, segregation, poverty, and human misery. NHLP stands opposed to this administration’s efforts to make those things worse. HUD is entrusted with the responsibilities of enforcing the Fair Housing Act and promoting equal housing opportunity for all. The agency is doing the exact opposite. In the coming days... Read More »

NHLP Denounces HUD’s Proposed Noncitizen Rule

On April 17, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) released a proposed rule for Congressional review that would prohibit “mixed status families” from living in public housing and Section 8 programs. The rule would further require all residents under the age of 62 to have their immigration status screened through the Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements Program (SAVE), which is operated by the Department of Homeland Security. Mixed status families are households that include both members who are eligible and ineligible for housing assistance based on their immigration status. Under a federal law called Section 214 of the Housing and Community Development Act of 1980, the housing subsidies of mixed status families are prorated... Read More »

David Brady Bryson

David Bryson distinguished himself as a tireless defender of the housing rights of the poor and as a brilliant legal professional. His work with NHLP spanned nearly 30 years and advanced his core belief in the ethical duty of the federal government to make decent and affordable housing available to all, regardless of income, race or disability. His legendary contributions to the world of housing litigation include many landmark cases that advanced tenants’ fundamental rights. Attorneys, scholars, and activists sought his sage counsel as did policymakers who found his expertise indispensable in developing critical protections that endure to this day. In his varied roles as an attorney, teacher, writer, or advisor, David’s innate decency was a hallmark of his tireless... Read More »

Sylvia Mary Brennan

A spirited defender of housing justice, Sylvia Brennan served as NHLP’s Director of Government Relations in Washington D.C. from 2003-2006. Her engaging personality and energetic readiness to move on to the next fight drove her extraordinary success as an advocate. Her work earned the deep respect of colleagues and adversaries alike. Following ten years as leader and advocate for the Legal Services of Northern Virginia, Sylvia joined NHLP in 2003 to head the D.C. Public Housing Resident Empowerment Project. Her efforts made important inroads in challenging unjust community service and trespass policies, and promoting asset building and leadership opportunities for public housing residents. Sylvia’s expertise and passion made her an effective trainer of both resident leaders and legal... Read More »