NCSC announces $10 million grant from the Wells Fargo Foundation to improve housing stability
Today, NCSC announced it has received a $10 million grant from the Wells Fargo Foundation to strengthen eviction diversion efforts in state courts and improve housing stability.
The landmark announcement took place during an event at the Historic DC Courthouse in Washington, D.C., this morning. Courts in the District of Columbia and Alaska, Indiana, Kansas, Michigan, Nevada, New York, Tennessee and Wisconsin are the beneficiaries of the Wells Fargo Foundation grant and NCSC’s Eviction Diversion Initiative.
“This unprecedented support from the Wells Fargo Foundation gives us the opportunity to help courts and communities overcome the housing challenges experienced as a result of the pandemic,” said NCSC President Mary C. McQueen. “By equipping courts with the needed resources and strategies to prevent avoidable evictions and promote housing stability, we’re working to permanently change how courts approach housing problems in a sustainable way that fairly supports all parties.”
Courts were selected for the program through a competitive application process reviewed by the EDI Advisory Council, which includes state supreme court chief justices, state court administrators and a Wells Fargo Foundation representative. Each court will use the grant funding to hire dedicated staff to implement holistic, sustainable and community-driven strategies for resolving eviction problems.
Courts will benefit from ongoing peer learning opportunities, a national evaluation led by Stout Risius Ross LLC and intensive technical assistance provided by NCSC as they implement eviction diversion and court reform strategies that leverage community resources including legal aid and mediation services, housing and financial counseling and rental assistance programs.
“This is such a tremendous opportunity to improve upon what we have already built over the course of the global pandemic,” said DC Court of Appeals Chief Judge Anna Blackburne-Rigsby. “With the commitment and contributions from the National Center for State Courts and Wells Fargo Foundation, the DC Courts remain as committed as ever to do what we can to keep people in their homes during these turbulent times.”
The Eviction Diversion Initiative is the latest addition to NCSC’s ongoing eviction work. For nearly two years, the Center has worked with partner organizations and agencies, including the U.S. Department of Justice, to provide state courts with resources to assist homeowners, landlords and renters with eviction-related issues.
Visit ncsc.org/eviction for more information about the Eviction Diversion Initiative.
Pictured above: NCSC Executive Vice President Mike Buenger moderates a panel discussion on eviction diversion earlier today with Chief Judge Anita Josey-Herring of the DC Superior Court, Judge Kimberly Bacon of the Lawrence Township Small Claims Court in Marion County (Ind.) and Nikki Del Casale, a D.C. tenant organizer.