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1995 January

Youth Law Developments in 1994

By The National Center for Youth Law

The past year's developments include beginning implementation of the Family Preservation and Support Initiative, several decisions and consent decrees in child welfare reform litigation, new regulations governing Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnosis, and Treatment, efforts to address the needs of AIDS orphans, new fair housing case law, and passage of several provisions affecting juveniles in the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994.

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Women and Family Law in 1994

By Nancy S. Erickson & Joan Zorza

In 1994 Congress finally passed the Violence Against Women Act as part of the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994. In addition to discussing the salient features of this new legislation, this article summarizes family law decisions and legislation of the past year that are of particular concern to advocates of battered women, AFDC recipients, and other low-income clients.

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Welfare Developments in 1994

By The Center on Social Welfare Policy and Law

During the past year, federal welfare reform proposals caused great concern among families receiving AFDC and their advocates. In addition to reviewing the themes of the major federal proposals and their status, this article summarizes the major court decisions and legislative and administrative actions of the past year that will have an impact on poor families in need of AFDC.

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Veterans' Law Developments

By The National Veterans Legal Services Project

The systemic breakdown of the VA claims adjudication system continued in 1994. This article examines that breakdown, regulatory and legislative developments in veterans' law, as well as the latest case law, including the Court of Veterans Appeals' continued refusal to award attorney fees under the EAJA.

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Law of Elderly Poor People in 1994

By The National Senior Citizens Law Center

This article reviews various court decisions and pieces of legislation and regulations enacted in 1994 that will have an impact on the rights of the elderly poor. Topics discussed include pensions, age discrimination, protective services, housing, nursing homes and other long-term care, Medicare, and Medicaid.

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Farmworker Law Developments

By The Migrant Legal Action Program

Farmworkers celebrated significant litigation victories in several areas, including claims arising under worker protection, pesticide, tax, and H-2A law; however, bills proposed to amend the Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act did not move, the initiative for health care reform failed, and the Chapter 1 program was changed substantially, with mixed results.

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Mental Disability Law in 1994

By The Judge David L. Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law

Although progress was made on some fronts in 1994 on behalf of individuals with mental disabilities, overall the results of the year's advocacy are sobering. This article discusses the collapse of the comprehensive health care reform initiative, punitive legislative amendments affecting disability recipients with substance-abuse problems, proposals to eliminate or curtail the children's SSI program, and gains made in litigation under the Fair Housing Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act.

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Immigrants's Rights Issues in 1994

By The National Immigration Law Center

A statutory amendment eliminating the requirement that immigrant visa applicants return to their home countries to complete the visa process passed in 1994. This article discusses that amendment, along with other 1994 developments, including the immigration-related provisions of the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act, Immigration and Nationality Act section 212(c) waivers of deportation, INS abuses, and immigrants' access to public benefits.

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Federal Housing Policies 1994

By The National Housing Law Project

In 1994 many of the changes regarding the federal housing programs resulted from action by HUD-in terms of both seeking broad public input and formal rulemaking. This article reviews housing law developments in various areas, including admissions and eligibility, third-party release of information, rents, and employment opportunities.

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Health Reform on Hold and Other 1994 Developments in Health Law

By The National Health Law Program

The political debate surrounding national health care reform was the most controversial issue in the arena of health law during 1994. In addition to reviewing the status of health care reform on the federal and state levels, this article discusses the major litigation, regulations, and research findings affecting the poor's access to health care over the past year.

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Employment Law Developments

By The National Employment Law Project

In 1994, the poor and the unemployed and their families continued to face an economy marked by too few jobs at living wages. This article reports on developments in unemployment compensation, job training, employment discrimination, and other fields of employment law, as well as proposals to address abuses associated with "contingent" work.

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Developments in Education Law 1994

By The Center for Law and Education

This article discusses recent legislation, including the Goals 2000: Educate America Act, the School-to-Work Opportunities Act, the Improving America's Schools Act, as well as case developments concerning school finance and education reform, educational rights of students with disabilities, school discipline, and discrimination.

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Building a Community Economic Development Unit

By Mario Salgado

During the past year, five legal services programs each received funding and technical assistance from the National Economic Development and Law Center to help them build community economic development capacity within their program and service area. This article describes the Center's work with these programs, the major accomplishments of the participating programs, and the lessons learned from this experience.

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Consumer and Energy Law in 1994 and Beyond

By The National Consumer Law Center

This article covers several recent developments of interest to consumers' advocates, including the ongoing process to revise the UCC, case law finding that rent-to-own contracts are credit sales, Department of Education regulations allowing students at certain closed schools to obtain discharges of their student loans, amendments to the Truth in Lending Act, the impact of environmental cleanup legislation on utility rates, and the trend toward deregulation of telephone and electric utilities.

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