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Aunt Martha’s Teams with UIC John Marshall Law School Fair Housing Legal Clinic in Civil Rights Case against Village of Midlothian

Aunt Martha’s Health and Wellness announced today that the UIC John Marshall Law School Fair Housing Legal Clinic has joined the organization’s continued effort to operate the state’s first and only children’s quarantine center for Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) youth in care affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The UIC John Marshall Law School Fair Housing Legal Clinic will serve as co-counsel in a federal lawsuit filed by Aunt Martha’s on May 12 asserting that the Village of Midlothian has engaged in discriminatory actions in violation of the Fair Housing Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Rehabilitation Act.

On May 27, the US District Court granted the organization’s request for an Emergency Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) prohibiting the Village from shutting down the Children’s Quarantine Center (CQC). The TRO was extended for an additional 60 days at a status held earlier this week.

“Aunt Martha’s has always stood up for the most vulnerable members of the communities we serve, especially DCFS youth in care, most of whom are African American and Latino,” said Raul Garza, the agency’s President and CEO. “We believe there are important civil rights issues involved in this case, and we’re proud to have the Clinic’s team on our side in this effort.”

As co-counsel, the Fair Housing Legal Clinic will offer its extensive fair housing related background and expertise in eliminating discriminatory practices and will help represent Aunt Martha’s in all aspects of this litigation.

Ricardo Meza of Meza Law will continue to serve as lead counsel. The Fair Housing Legal Clinic joins Roger Derstine of Roger B. Derstine, Chartered, Homero Tristan of Tristan & Cervantes, and Sohil Shah of Posinelli, PC as co-counsel.

About the UIC John Marshall Law School Fair Housing Legal Support Center and Clinic

The primary goal of UIC John Marshall’s Fair Housing Legal Support Center & Clinic is to educate the public about fair housing law and to provide legal assistance to those private or public organizations that seek to eliminate discriminatory housing practices. Since 1993, the Clinic has served thousands of clients in the Chicago metropolitan area who have been denied housing because of discrimination under federal, state, and local fair housing laws and ordinances. The Clinic is partially funded through a grant from the US Department of Housing and Urban Development.