Legal Aid Lawyers Hit N.Y. Study that Denies Aid to Control Group of Nearly Homeless
Legal aid lawyers are criticizing a New York study that denies aid to a control group of people seeking help from a program to prevent homelessness.
The study monitors 400 households in danger of eviction, the New York Times reports. Half obtained aid from the city’s Homebase program of job training, counseling and emergency cash, while the other half were denied help.
Officials who defended the program said many people are denied Homebase help in any event because it runs out of money every year. They also noted that people in the control group were given the names of other agencies that could help.
Manhattan borough president Scott Stringer called for an immediate halt to the study, according to the Times. “The city shouldn’t be making guinea pigs out of its most vulnerable,” he said.
Legal aid lawyer Ian Davie of Legal Services NYC is among the critics. He was able to help a client denied assistance as part of the study. “She was the person who didn’t fall through the cracks,” he told the Times. “It’s the people who don’t have assistance that are the ones we really worry about.”