Legal Aid Support for ALICE Families Facing Eviction.

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Three organizations receive $50,000 investments to provide needed support to ALICE (Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed) families in Central Florida.

Addressing the Crisis

When the moratorium on housing evictions expires, thousands of people in Central Florida will be unsure what will happen to them and their families. Will they be homeless in the next few weeks? Many are uncertain where to go to find answers, to get help. One thing is for sure, families will need legal help if they are going to save their homes.

“The impact of COVID-19 on our region will have long-term implications for the prosperity of our community,” said Jeff Hayward, President/CEO of Heart of Florida United Way. “Many residents who were struggling to make ends meet before the pandemic are now facing even more financial instability, including eviction due to job loss or furloughs. These residents are now ALICE, or Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed, and are facing eviction through no fault of their own.”

Investing in Stability

Supporting the ALICE population, Heart of Florida United Way has invested in legal representation for families facing COVID-related eviction. We invested $50,000 in the Legal Aid Society of the Orange County Bar Association, Community Legal Services of Mid-Florida in Osceola County, and the Seminole County Bar Association Legal Aid Society for a total of $150,000 in aid for Central Floridians.

“Many families are unaware of their rights, so through this investment in our legal aid organizations, they can receive the necessary legal counsel to navigate the court process with the hope they will be able to remain in their homes.” Hayward continues.

Each of these agencies provides residents facing eviction with legal consultation and other services to strengthen their financial stability. And in some cases, legal representation when applicable.

Serving the Community

“The Legal Aid Society of the Orange County Bar Association, Inc. is grateful for funding from Heart of Florida United Way,” said Larri Thatcher, attorney, and deputy director, and pro bono director for the Legal Aid Society of the Orange County Bar Association. 

“It is our 60th anniversary, and we’re honored to still be here for the Orange County community providing free legal assistance to those in need. With this additional funding, we’ll be able to continue our services in the areas of family, consumer, housing, immigration, and economic development for low-income residents of Orange County. Our goal is to help reduce and eradicate legal crises such as barriers to employment, unlawful evictions, and income discrepancies.”

The Investment Model

Heart of Florida United Way’s “Investor Model” allows partner agencies the flexibility to respond to unanticipated needs, crises, or opportunities. The model provides general operating support, ensuring dollars are more valuable to agencies, have more impact, and allow HFUW to base the size of the investment on performance outcomes.

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