DIFFA/Chicago – Request for COVID-19 needs

In this uncertain time Legal Council is working hard to ensure protections for the communities we serve while also protecting our staff.

We continue to advocate for the protections of communities most at-risk during this trying time. Our commitment to the LGBTQ community remains strong and we have reached out to our partners to share and disseminate information on policy changes, and to inform them that our attorneys are available for intakes. Our Howard Brown Health (HBH) legal clinic is open and we are working with the HBH call center to schedule appointments. Right now, a lot of our casework relates to unemployment, housing issues, insurance, and HIV confidentiality. We are seeing more legal services related to the consequences of sheltering in place. We are also assisting clients with the questions related to the federal stimulus payments.

I am also happy to report that we received funding from the Chicago Community Trust LGBTQ Fund to expand our services to Howard Brown’s Hyde Park location. This funding will allow us to couple our services with our work at the 63rd Street location. Our commitment to health equity means we have to serve the communities that have the highest disparities. As we have seen with this crisis, which has disproportionately affected communities of color, it is pertinent that we focus on reducing the barriers to care. We are looking at additional funding to ensure we can properly grow this work. I am happy to share with you updates as this project moves along. I will also share our emergency response work.

Lastly, in an effort to ensure quick protections, Legal Council and our partners in the Protect Our Care Illinois coalition reached out to Gov. Pritzker, pushing for policy changes that would help protect the health and safety of Illinoisans during the pandemic. We advocated for expanded access to comprehensive health coverage and elimination of barriers to testing and treatment.

We cannot thank you enough for your support. DIFFA/Chicago was one of Legal Council’s first grants and we could not have expanded our services or our impact policy without your philanthropic support.