Friend's family being evicted; what are the options?
August 14, 2008 5:43 PM   Subscribe

Eviction and future plans: My friend is 24, a recent college grad, lives in New York. Her father, mother and 3 young siblings live in a house (in Los Angeles) from which they are about to get evicted at the end of the month, having not paid rent for almost a year. Her father has terminal stomach cancer with a prognosis of 6 months. Her father is a disabled veteran and the family had been getting by on his veterans' pension. Her mother speaks, but does not write in English. My friend now finds herself in the position of figuring out how to handle this situation. For the hivemind: Are there programs, veterans' or otherwise, she should know about? General advice? We're at a loss for easy ideas.
posted by the jam to Law & Government (7 answers total)
Where is he getting medical care? The VA? Ask for a social worker there.

It's not much, but getting them into the system might help.
posted by 26.2 at 6:25 PM on August 14, 2008

have someone in CA call 2-1-1 and ask for referral for help with emergency housing.
posted by metahawk at 6:39 PM on August 14, 2008

Try giving these folks a call: Los Angeles Center for Law and Justice. Landlord-Tenant law is usually one of the areas of law covered by legal aid clinics, so if they can't help they can probably point you in the direction of someone who can. I'd be willing to bet UCLA's law school has a clinic too - they might be able to give referrals as well.

Google around - some combination of "legal aid" and "landlord tenant" and "los angeles" should get you somewhere.
posted by AV at 8:27 PM on August 14, 2008

Hoo boy. Well, my brother was being evicted from his housing when he was in the Navy, based at Alameda, and he and his wife and kids all got referred by someone to one of those TV news problem-solver segments, which got them affordable housing up in Concord. Not wartime, nothing special about them, just a normalish family with no obvious options.

Perhaps you could short-circuit the eviction somehow but unless paying the landlord back in installments is somehow possible, and it doesn't sound like it, you'll have to prepare them for eviction regardless. Your best bet may be to delay it as long as possible.

This is CalVets, the California Office ov Veterans Affairs.

There are some vet-oriented housing resources here.

I would call anyone and everyone. VFW outposts, American Legion, Vietnam Veterans, Congressman, everyone.
posted by dhartung at 9:59 PM on August 14, 2008

As a further resource to call, the Red Cross often helps out with temporary housing services. Definitely do try to connect with a county social worker; the children will not be taken away, and they may be offered further resources.

Good thoughts and good luck in these tough times.
posted by samthemander at 2:36 AM on August 15, 2008

Call the V.A. NOW.

At least in my state (and it's a federal agency so it shouldn't matter) there have been aggressive efforts made to prevent homelessness among currently "housed" vets, especially during the foreclosure crisis.
posted by availablelight at 4:24 AM on August 15, 2008

If it looks like they might wind up on the streets Beyond Shelter might be able to do something for them. I've corresponded with the folks at Beyond Shelter pretty extensively and they run a top of the line family homelessness program, really probably the best in the country. It's worth it to at least contact them for some advice on what your options are.
posted by The Straightener at 6:33 AM on August 15, 2008

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