In the news: Melanie Gleason
Attorney Melanie Gleason is joining Lawyers for Civil Rights to provide legal services to patients at Mass General Hospital health centers in Revere, Everett and Charlestown. Gleason will be part of a team to help patients obtain housing and income supports as part of MGH’s the Legal Initiative for Care.
LINC was launched in 2003 to improve the health and well-being of low-income families who are patients of the pediatric or adult primary care practices at MGH Chelsea with a mission of addressing the legal issues that affect a patient’s health. Attorney Laura Maslow-Armand has been providing legal services since the program’s inception, including representation to prevent eviction, filing for unemployment benefits, applying for subsidized housing, advocating for special accommodations for patients with disabilities, appealing denial of disability awards and, in general, facilitating access to public benefits for patients.
The team and will focus primarily on housing issues. If a patient has the resources and ability, Attorney Gleason helps them self-advocate by providing legal information and coaching to help them mediate and negotiate a conflict. If the patient needs additional support and there is legal action to be taken, she will assist more directly by representing them in their housing matter.
“Since the eviction moratorium is in place until at least mid-October, LINC has been assisting patients with housing needs such as mediating/negotiating with landlords about uninhabitable living conditions; helping patients understand and enforce their rights as a tenant with or without a written lease; resolving conflicts and disputes with landlords, neighbors, and roommates—and more,” said Sarah Oo, director of Community Health Improvement at MGH Chelsea. “With this much-needed increase in capacity, we are better able to address the critical need of our patients at MGH Chelsea as well as our other health centers.”