Kateland Alan Woodcock

  • Hosted by Central Virginia Legal Aid Society
  • Sponsored by Housing Justice Program
  • Service location Petersburg, Virginia
  • Law school University of Richmond School of Law
  • Issue area Housing/Homelessness
  • Fellowship class year 2019
  • Program Housing Justice Program

The Project

Kateland’s project seeks to address the eviction crisis in Richmond, Virginia, as well as in surrounding areas. Richmond, Virginia has the second highest eviction rate for large cities in the country. Petersburg, Virginia has the second highest eviction rate for mid-size cities in the country, and Hopewell, Virginia has the fourth highest eviction rate for mid-sized cities. Part of the issue surrounding eviction is that tenants oftentimes are not present in court or do not have a lawyer with them at court. Any person who rents a place to live can be affected by this issue, but it disproportionately affects people of lower income and minorities.

Kateland plans to tackle the eviction crisis in a multifaceted way. The largest part of her focus will be direct representation of clients with housing law issues in court. Another part of her focus will be working with community organizers to help educate the public, with a specific eye towards those more often affected by the crisis. A final part of her focus will be working with all the groups involved in the project to inform them of areas where the current law fails to protect tenants.

Kateland’s interest in housing began in her childhood, when she saw a mother and multiple children crammed into a small place because anything larger was outside the mother’s grasp. As an adult, Kateland learned about how housing instability can affect someone’s health and income, among other things. When she learned that her beloved community’s eviction rate was so high, she knew she had to help.

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