Homeless Outreach Project
Recognizing that the most vulnerable members of our community are the most likely to find help inaccessible, Legal Aid believes that we must go out into the streets, the parks, the soup kitchens and shelters to meet the homeless and desperate where they are. Funded by the Hampton Roads Community Foundation, we have one attorney, Melissa Bonfiglio, and one social worker, Pamela Davis, dedicated to helping our clients who live outside. Melissa and Pamela are able, not only to address the legal issues of our clients, but can meaningfully connect them to the community support systems that are available and ultimately assist them in finding homes and reestablishing themselves indivually and as members of the community.
Equal Access to Transportation Initiative
Hampton Roads is the 37th largest metropolitan area in the United States, but it ranks 96th in job accessibility through public transit out of the 100 largest metro areas. In Hampton Roads, only 2% of jobs are accessible via public transit in 30 minutes and 5% in 60 minutes. The lack of adequate public transit in the region makes having a car a necessity, but low-income car buyers face a multitude of predatory and unfair practices. Sponsored by Equal Justice Works, Attorney Frank White represents clients throughout our service area against unscrupoulous car dealers and lenders, as well as providing important educational outreach to low-income persons about the common pitfalls of purchasing cars, and the rights and responsibilities of consumers under the law.
Safe at Home
At Legal Aid we believe that no victim of domestic violence should have to face their abuser alone. Partnering with our region's domestic vioence shelters and advocates throughout our communities, we have three attorneys and one paralegal who provide full representation in court to all victims of domestic violence in protective orders, custody, support and divorce matters.
Advocates for Credit, Employment and Shelter
Understanding that sometimes combating poverty and injustice requires a coordinated effort, we have partnered with the other Legal Services Corporation of Virginia grantees to fight statewide issues surrounding equal access to credit, employment and housing. Attorney Jesse Zajac zealously advocates throughout our service area on these issues, as well as coordinating statewide initiatives with other ACE advocates throughout the state.