In the Fall of 2001, HAP expanded the reach of its network of legal clinics by establishing the Veterans Project, aimed at meeting the complex legal needs of homeless veterans. HAP holds a monthly legal clinic at the Perimeter, a daytime drop-in center for homeless veterans. The Perimeter is operated by the Philadelphia Veterans Multi-Service and Education Center, servicing an estimated 3,000 homeless veterans living in the Delaware Valley.
HAP's Veterans Project is the only legal assistance program in Philadelphia that specifically targets homeless veterans. The Veterans Project was founded in response to a call from Perimeter staff who felt that many of the clients had urgent legal needs that were not being met. These needs included assistance with traditional poverty law matters, such as consumer and credit problems, landlord/tenant disputes, access to income maintenance programs, and family law issues, as well as veteran-specific matters such as eligibility for veterans benefits and compensation for service-related disabilities.
Through the Veterans Project, HAP has expanded its reach into the homeless community to educate and advocate on behalf of a particularly vulnerable population that had previously been overlooked by Philadelphia's public interest sector. Through this project, HAP is creating opportunities for self-empowerment and sustainability and an end to the cycle of homelessness so many veterans experience.
For more information or to volunteer for this project, please call 215-523-9595, or email HAP staff attorney Michael Taub at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Veteran's Project celebrated 10 years of success in 2011. Read the article in the January 24, 2011 issue of The Legal Intelligencer.
Michael Taub was nominated by Readers Digest for Hero of the Year 2006. Listen to his interview.