Categories Legal Guide

Dept. of Veterans Affairs Lawsuit Approved as Class Action – Shield Smart

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A federal case where BGL represents 14 unhoused veterans seeking access to housing and healthcare has been approved as a class action lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) as of May 2, 2024.

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The lawsuit demands that the VA provide permanent supportive housing on and around its West Los Angeles campus for thousands of homeless veterans with serious mental illness, traumatic brain injuries or post-traumatic stress disorder. BGL will now proudly represent all homeless veterans in Los Angeles who fall under the classifications.

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In November 2022, Eve Hill of Brown, Goldstein & Levy working with a nonprofit organization, filed a complaint on behalf of unhoused, disabled veterans suing the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) for lack of access to housing and healthcare.

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The initial complaint asked for an order giving the agency six months to create over 3,500 permanent supportive housing units for veterans with disabilities on or near the West Los Angeles VA campus, as well as ensuring that portions of the campus currently leased to other entities would be used primarily for veterans.

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The lawsuit was built on promises that the VA made in a 2015 settlement with 10 veterans with severe disabilities. At the time, the VA agreed to provide housing and supportive services for veterans, setting a goal of 770 housing units by 2022. However, after seven years, only 54 of the promised 770 housing units have been completed.

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“I’m proud to stand with our clients and with all Americans who demand these veterans receive the supportive housing and healthcare they deserve,” Eve Hill said of the case in February 2024.

Brown, Goldstein & Levy is proud to advocate for the rights of individuals with mental illness to ensure their stories are told and to work to end the stigma for good.

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About Eve Hill:

Eve Hill is one of the nation’s leading civil rights lawyers, known especially for her work with clients with disabilities and LGBTQ+ clients. She has been recognized by Law360 as one of just 12 “Titans of the Plaintiffs’ Bar” for 2023, as well as by Lawdragon as one of the 500 Leading Lawyers in America (2022 and 2023). Her wide-ranging experience complements Brown, Goldstein & Levy’s decades of dedication to high-impact disability rights cases and its advocacy on behalf of individuals with disabilities and their families. Eve chairs the Board of Trustees for the Judge David L. Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law, a national legal advocacy organization advancing and protecting the civil rights of adults and children with mental illness. Eve also leads Inclusivity, BGL’s Strategic Consulting Group, which works with organizations to promote the education, engagement, and employment of people with disabilities. Learn more about Eve here.

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About BGL:

Founded in 1982, Brown, Goldstein & Levy is a law firm based in Baltimore, Maryland, with an office in Washington, D.C. The firm is nationally recognized in a wide variety of practice areas, including complex civil and commercial litigation, civil rights, health care, family law, and criminal defense. Above all else, Brown, Goldstein & Levy is a client-centered law firm that brings decades of experience and passionate, effective advocacy to your fight for justice.

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