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2004 May - June

Applying the Americans with Disabilities Act in Child Care Settings

By Marcia Henry & Ava Yajima

The Americans with Disabilities Act protects all persons with disabilities from discrimination by government programs, employers, and "public accommodations." Child care providers, being within the law's definition of public accommodation, may not automatically exclude a child with a disability from their program. The Act allows for exclusion only if, given the child's individual needs, the program cannot reasonably accommodate the child.

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Financial Education and Asset-Building Programs for Welfare Recipients and Low-Income Workers:The Illinois Experience

Financial Education and Asset-Building Programs for Welfare Recipients and Low-Income Workers:The Illinois Experience

By Dory Rand

Making sound financial decisions, building savings, establishing good credit, and other money management skills help low-income persons break out of poverty. The program created by the Financial Links for Low-Income People, a diverse statewide coalition, addresses the financial education and asset-building needs of welfare recipients and low-income workers. Illinois's experience with the program can be a blueprint for other states and federal policy initiatives in this growing area of legal advocacy.

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Preparing for Litigation

By Gary F. Smith & Susan Ann Silverstein

Before selecting litigation as the tool for obtaining a client's goals, advocates should consider questions such as Who is the client and what are the client's desired outcomes? What are the required resources for litigation? Are the capacities of the legal aid program sufficient? Should administrative or legislative advocacy or amicus participation be considered? Advocates may also want to bring law-reform, test-case, or impact litigation.

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Preparing for and Handling Social Security Adult Disability Hearings

By Thomas Yates

Preparing an adult Social Security Disability Insurance or Supplemental Security Income claim for hearing before an administrative law judge can be daunting for a new advocate. A road map for this critical stage in a claimant's case shows the five-step legal definition of disability and the "grids" describes evidence development including medical source statements, discusses preparing a client to testify and submission of a prehearing statement, offers guidance on conducting the hearing, including the difficult task of cross-examining medical and vocational experts, and cites some posthearing options to complete the advocacy.

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Employment Protection for Domestic Violence Victims

By Wendy R. Weiser & Deborah A. Widiss

May an employer discriminate against an employee simply because she is a victim of domestic violence? May an employer fire an employee for taking time off to obtain a protective order? New legal developments protect victims of domestic violence from employment discrimination. Legislation, case law, and legal theories on protection in the workplace for domestic violence victims are expanding.

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