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COVID-19 Information and Updates

Proving Idaho’s Creativity, Secretary of State Lawerence Denney To Announce New Partnership

Details will be released during a press conference on Thursday, April 16, 2020 at 3pm. The press conference will be streamed live on the Idaho Secretary of State Facebook page, where comments will be addressed both live and immediately following.

Moratorium on Evictions in federally subsidized housing, Stay at Home, & COVID-19 information

Provided in partnership from Idaho Legal Aid Services and the Public Housing Authorities of Idaho.

Recently the federal government passed the CARES Act in response to the COVID-19 Pandemic. This new law imposes a 120-day moratorium on tenant evictions in most federally subsidized housing properties/programs. Tenants in qualifying properties cannot be evicted for nonpayment of rent and cannot be charged late fees until after July 24, 2020. For more information about the CARES Act and Evictions, visit: https://www.nhlp.org/wp-content/uploads/2020.03.27-NHLP-CARES-Act-Eviction-Moratorium-Summary.pdf

Even though evictions are suspended, rent is still due.

Here is some general advice:

  1. If you are able to, pay your rent. We are all in this together and if you can and do pay your rent, it may help your landlord to more easily work with someone who truly can’t pay. If you can only pay a portion of your rent, you should contact your landlord to discuss how much you can pay and when you can pay it. If you are able to secure a ‘partial payment’ agreement, put it in writing. Include these key details: when payments will be made, how much the payments will be, how much will still be owed after each payment, the date of the agreement and the signatures of you and your landlord. You and your landlord should each keep a copy.
  2. If you receive rental assistance and your income has decreased, report those changes to the agency that administers your assistance as soon as possible. Your portion of the rent may be decreased as a result. Failure to pay your portion of the rent can be considered a violation of family obligations for which you could lose your assistance.
  3. If you need help paying your rent, you can call 2-1-1 to find out about financial assistance programs in your area. If your work hours have been reduced or eliminated, you can apply for unemployment insurance online in English or Spanish at https://www2.labor.idaho.gov/ClaimantPortal/Login. You can also report to or call your closest Idaho Department of Labor Office.

 

  1. If paying rent is an extreme burden for you, consider contacting your landlord in writing to explain why and request a payment plan. You may ask for a delay or reduction in rent, a stop to rent increases and late fees, a 6-month period for repayment of rent, and the ability to break your lease if necessary. We suggest you add to your letter specific information about why you will have difficulty paying rent. Keep any papers you have about why you are unable to pay rent–for example, if you received a letter or an email about losing your job or working fewer hours.
  2. Low income Idahoans can call Idaho Legal Aid Services Covid-19 Legal Advice Line at 208-746-7541 for free legal advice about their specific housing situation.

Eviction suspension:

The CARES Act stops covered landlords from filing new eviction cases for nonpayment of rent beginning on March 27, 2020.  This protection will continue until July 24, 2020.  It also stops those landlords from charging fees and penalties related to nonpayment of rent.  When eviction cases are allowed again, covered landlords must give tenants 30 days’ notice to vacate (lease) the home before filing an eviction case.

The Act does not cover the following eviction cases:

  • Evictions that were filed before March 27, 2020, or after July 24, 2020;
  • Tenants who live in properties that are not covered by the act; and
  • Evictions for reasons other than nonpayment of rent (such as termination of tenancy or for violations of lease terms);

There may be cases where landlords don’t give a reason for the eviction.  However, covered tenants who believe their eviction is even partially related to nonpayment of rent should bring up the CARES Act as a defense.

If your property is not covered by the CARES Act or if the eviction is for a reason other than nonpayment, then the CARES Act moratorium does not apply and your landlord can file an eviction against you.  However, based on restrictions on the types of hearings that are being held in state court, it is possible that the eviction proceeding will be delayed.  If you are served with a summons and complaint for an eviction action, you should contact a lawyer immediately.

Low income Idahoans can call Idaho Legal Aid Services Covid-19 Legal Advice Line at 208-746-7541 for free legal advice about your specific situation.

Stay at Home order. For more information about Idaho’s Stay at Home order please see:

Idaho Legal Aid Services—free and confidential Covid-19 Legal Advice Line. Idaho Legal Aid Services has created an attorney staffed Covid-19 Legal Advice Line to its existing domestic violence, housing and senior legal advices lines.  Low income Idahoans and seniors of any income can call 208-746-7541 for services.

DRI Letter to Idaho State Department of Special Education – Virtual Learning

A letter regarding best practices for provision of FAPE (free appropriate public education) during this time of uncertainty due to the spread of the coronavirus and the resulting disease, COVID-19.

Accessibility Guidance for COVID-19 Drive-Thru Testing Sites

A fact sheet of considerations and strategies to promote accessibility at drive-thru medical sites, including those sites where patients may be asked to exit their vehicles.

 

We Need Your Input

We are seeking your input to determine which issues we should work on in the future. Please help us out and click button below to complete survey. Thank you!

 

 

No Safe Place to Call Home:

A Report on the Cycle of Abuse, Neglect, and Injury at the Southwest Idaho
Treatment Center

DRI is the Protection and Advocacy (P&A) system for the State of Idaho. The P&A system was originally created to safeguard the well-being of individ­uals living in institutions. This remains a major focus of P&A activity today. As such, DRI monitors, investigates, and attempts to remedy adverse condi­tions in large and small, public and private, facili­ties that care for people with disabilities. DRI believes that people with disabilities are entitled to be free from abuse, neglect, exploitation, discrimination, and isolation, and are to be treated with respect and dignity.

To complete this mission, DRI conducted a secondary, systemic investigation into allegations of abuse and neglect that occurred at the Southwest Idaho Treatment Center (SWITC) from January 1, 2017 through January 31, 2018. SWITC is Idaho’s only publically funded, state-run Intermediate Care Facility for the Intellectually Disabled (ICF/IID). DRI’s investigation was limited to reviewing the appropriateness, accuracy, and thoroughness of the investigations conducted by SWITC and Idaho Department of Health and Welfare (IDHW) investigators. In conducting this secondary investigation, DRI reviewed over five thousand (5,000) pages of records provided by SWITC and IDHW officials, including but not limited to completed internal investigations, facility policies, employee training records, and records pertaining to facility staffing and . In addition, DRI also reviewed the investigations into resident abuse and neglect completed by Adult Protection and multiple licensing surveys conducted by the IDHW Bureau of Facility Standards during 2017 and 2018. In total, DRI reviewed over twenty-thousand (20,000) pages of records pertaining to SWITC. DRI also enlisted the services of a professional consultant with over twenty-five (25) years’ experience in developmental disability facility management and administration to assist in this review.

Please click on the links below to download documents associated with this investigation.

Download the Report.

SWITC Press Release.

Fact Sheet: What Abuse or Neglect Occurred?

Fact Sheet: Improper Investigation.

The Cycle of Abuse.

Welcome to DisAbility Rights Idaho!

DisAbility Rights Idaho is one of Idaho’s most effective human rights organizations. Founded in 1977, for our first 30 years we were known by the acronym Co-Ad for Comprehensive Advocacy. We are a non-profit, advocacy agency serving people with disabilities in Idaho. Advocacy means to speak on behalf of a person or a cause. It comes from a Latin root meaning “to give voice to”. DRI gives people with disabilities a voice to assert and defend their own rights through information, education and individual assistance. We give people a voice in court through legal representation. We give people a voice in government through public policy advocacy. We advocate for all people with disabilities in Idaho regardless of the type of disability or the age of the person. We help people with disabilities to: address abuse and neglect; obtain services and supports they need to live, work and play in their own homes and communities; get an appropriate education; access to health care; find and use vocational services and get support for employment; redress discrimination; and achieve equal access to buildings and services. Please explore our site, comment on our work and our priorities, and support our important mission.
– James R. Baugh, Executive Director DisAbility Rights Idaho
Learn more about Disability Rights Idaho

Who Do We Help?

Over 200,000 residents of Idaho have disabilities.  DisAbility Rights Idaho helps people with any type of disability to assert and defend their rights. We also address issues that affect all Idahoans with disabilities by working with state agencies and  non-profits, serving on committees, task forces and work groups.

Learn more about Disability Rights Idaho’s services

Help us help the ones who need it most. Please consider making a donation.

 

 

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Anne and Garrett received help from Disability Rights Idaho. Hear their story…

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