Here are the latest news items of interest to the legal aid community and it's clients. Click the article headline for the full story.

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Michael J. Astrue, Commissioner of Social Security, hosted the agency's fourth public hearing on Compassionate Allowances on July 29, 2009. Commissioner Astrue was joined by Marie A. Bernard, M.D., Deputy Director of the National Institute on Aging, National Institutes of Health, and other Social Security officials. They heard testimony from some of the nation’s leading experts on early-onset Alzheimer's disease and related dementias about possible methods for identifying and implementing Compassionate Allowances for people with early-onset Alzheimer's.


Minimum wage increases by 10 cents to $7.25 an hour on Friday, July 24, 2009.

The increase was mandated by the Fair Minimum Wage Act, which President George Bush signed in May 2007. This law raises the minimum wage to $7.25 from $7.15 an hour putting Pennsylvania at the same level as the federal minimum wage for the first time since 2006, when the state and federal minimums were both at $5.15 an hour.

The state's minimum wage has been at $7.15 since July 2007, while the federal minimum has been at $6.55 an hour since July 24, 2008. News

Protesters say Pennsylvania's state budget axe could put hundreds of veterans and veterans' home workers on the street unless some proposed cuts are restored.

State Senate leaders are proposing $7.6 million in cuts to veterans' homes across Pennsylvania, which would result in another nearly $6 million lost in federal matching funds.

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Hundreds of extremely low-income families living with HIV/AIDS will receive support in maintaining a permanent affordable home as a result of $21.4 million in grants announced by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

In each of the next three years, these grants are expected to help 1,159 households address the challenges of living with HIV by improving their ability to manage illnesses and consistently engage in appropriate care as a result of their on-going housing arrangements. News

Legal Aid of Southeastern Pennsylvania has joined with the Bucks County Courts system and the Bucks County Bar Association to launch a pilot program called The Mortgage Foreclosure Diversion Program.