The Cooper Square Committee provides housing counseling and social services, free of charge, to area residents — people residing between E. 14th St. and Delancey Street, from the Bowery to Avenue D. We recommend that you call 212-228-8210 to make an appointment.
If you live outside of our area, please look on the DHCR website to find a housing organization near you.
1) Tenant Counseling and Eviction Prevention
The Cooper Square Committee provides housing counseling to tenants facing the threat of eviction. We can advise you about how to respond to a holdover or dispossess proceeding. If you need an attorney we can refer you to one. Whether you are eligible for free legal assistance depends on your income. If you live in another area, we can refer you to a service provider that serves your neighborhood.
2) Tenant Organizing Assistance
The Cooper Square Committee assists tenants interested in forming a tenant association. If you live in a building with many housing code violations, sporadic heat and hot water, poor maintenance or a landlord who harasses you, you can often be more effective in addressing a systemic building wide problem by working with the other tenants to get building-wide repairs and improvements. To find out how to go about organizing your building, contact us.
We have experienced tenant organizers who can advise you about the following:
- How to have productive communication and negotiations with your landlord.
- How to take your landlord to court to get repairs.
- How and whether to file complaints with the Division of Housing and Community Renewal if you believe you are being overcharged, harassed, experiencing declining building services, etc.
- How to utilize your Community Board and elected officials as allies to resolve your problems.
3) General Housing Related Advice
The Cooper Square Committee gives advice to tenants who have questions about their lease renewal, including lease riders, lease renewal increases and preferential rents; we can advise you about safeguarding your rights in a variety of different situations. If you are unsure whether your landlord is asking you to do something in accordance with the law, contact us.
The Cooper Square Committee offers a variety of social services to Lower East Side residents in need.
1) Applying for Income Support
Our Social Services staff conducts an intake process to determine whether a client is income-eligible for the entitlement assistance they are seeking. Clients may receive help in applying for Section 8, Food Stamps, Medicaid, Public Assistance, Senior Citizen Rent Income Exemption (SCRIE) and other forms of assistance.
2) Applying for Subsidized Housing
Staff members are available to help anyone request applications for affordable housing from low, moderate or middle income housing developers. We can assist people with filling out the applications as well, to make sure that they have filled them out properly and attached the necessary income documentation. The types of housing we can assist with include: New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) apartments, Section 202 Senior Citizen housing, new low income apartments built under an HPD Program or an HFA 80/20 program. In addition, assistance is available to homeless persons seeking help in obtaining transitional and/or permanent housing.
3) Job Training Referrals and Job Referrals
Unemployed and under-employed persons seeking work or job training can contact us to obtain referrals to sites where they may obtain English as Second Language (ESL) instruction, enroll in GED classes or get job training.
Our staff is bilingual (English and Spanish), and can refer you to the appropriate service providers if we are not able to assist you directly.