Police motorcycles in front of the old Durham NC District 5 district office

LEGAL EASE

&  SAFETY FIRST

DURHAM CITY COUNCIL MEETINGS

City Council Regular Meetings and Work Sessions are listed below. You can choose to attend in person in City Council Chambers (101 City Hall Plaza) or via the City’s YouTube channel, Twitter account, Facebook page, Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV (via the free Boxcast app), Spectrum channel 8, Google Fiber channel 8, Frontier channel 70, or AT&T U-verse channel 99 in Durham.

  • ​Monday, December 6, 7–10pm—Regular Meeting

  • Thursday, December 9, 1–5pm—Work Session

  • ​Monday, December 20, 7–10pm—Regular Meeting

  • Thursday, December 23, 1–5pm—Work Session.

DURHAM BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS MEETINGS

The Durham Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) next virtual Regular Sessions will be held on Monday, November 8 and 22, 7–10pm online via Zoom. You can watch via the County’s website, YouTube channel, or Spectrum channel 8.

LEGAL AID NORTH CAROLINA

Legal Aid NC will host HOME (Housing on Monday Evening) every Monday from 4 to 5pm. A Legal Aid NC housing attorney will talk about a range of current and important housing-related topics and will also answer questions (of a general nature). Click here for more info and to watch (and participate) live.

Legal Aid of North Carolina will host Free Forum Friday every Friday from 11am to noon. Get your questions (of a general nature) answered on a variety of topics. Click here for more info and to watch (and participate) live.

 

Legal Aid NC will host a free Social Security Disability Clinic on Thursday, December 2, 2:30–4pm. Learn about the application process and how to prove that you’re entitled to benefits. Attend the clinic on Legal Aid NC’s Facebook page. Free legal assistance is available at 866-219-5262.

 

Legal Aid NC will host a free Criminal Record Expungement Webinar on Tuesday, December 7, 2:30–5:30pm. Learn how to legally remove previous offenses from your record so you can improve your chances of finding a job and seizing new opportunities. Watch the webinar on Legal Aid NC’s Facebook pageFree legal assistance is available at 866-219-5262.

Legal Aid NC will host a free Child Custody Clinic on Tuesday, December 14, 2:30–4pm. Learn all about child visitation rules/agreements. Watch the webinar on Legal Aid NC’s Facebook pageFree legal assistance is available at 866-219-5262.

 

Legal Aid NC will host a free Simple Divorce Webinar on Thursday, December 16, 2:30–4pm. These are the basics; property division, spousal support, and alimony issues are best done with the aid of an attorney. Watch the webinar on Legal Aid NC’s Facebook pageFree legal assistance is available at 866-219-5262.

Legal Aid NC will host a free Criminal Record Expungement Webinar on Tuesday, January 4, 2:30–5:30pm. Learn how to legally remove previous offenses from your record so you can improve your chances of finding a job and seizing new opportunities. Watch the webinar on Legal Aid NC’s Facebook pageFree legal assistance is available at 866-219-5262.​

CITY OF DURHAM

Click on the calendar to see all of the City of Durham committee, subcommittee, commission, board, and other meetings for the month of December.

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DURHAM COUNTY

Click on the calendar to see all of the Durham County committee, commission, advisory council, and other meetings for the month of December.

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HOUSING HELPLINE
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Legal Aid NC, in partnership with the NC HOPE program, has set up a new statewide Housing Helpline. Call 877-201-6426 to get help with:

 

  • evictions

  • landlord refusing rental assistance (like NC HOPE, etc)

  • repairs and maintenance

  • mobile home evictions

  • other landlord-tenant issues

  • public and subsidized-housing lease terminations

  • housing vouchers (including Section 8).

This service is available Mondays through Thursdays, 8:30am–4pm.

DURHAM PAC MEETINGS

602 E Main St, emergency 911, nonemergency 919-560-4600, Crimestoppers 919-560-1300, website:

The PAC (Partners Against Crime) meetings, where you can share information on what’s happening in your community, learn about City and County programs, services, and events, have continued online during the pandemic with virtual meetings on Zoom. (Click here and type in your address if you’re not sure which police district you live in.)


Here’s the PAC meeting schedule:

  • PAC 1—3rd Saturday (December 18, January 15), 9:30am; click here to join at meeting time

  • PAC 2—2nd Monday (December 13, January 10), 6pm; click here to register for the next meeting

  • PAC 3—2nd Saturday (December 11, January 8), 10am; click here to join at meeting time

  • PAC 4—2nd Saturday (December 11, January 8), 10am; click here to join at meeting time

  • PAC 5—2nd Thursday (December 9, January 13), 6pm; click here to join at meeting time.


Keeping up with what’s happening in your community is easier if you subscribe to your local PAC’s listserv. Send an request via email by writing to:


Contact info for each PAC for sharing information and asking questions:

MORE FROM LEGAL AID NC

Legal Aid NC offers free help to low-income residents in all 100 counties in North Carolina. Here are some of their programs:

  • Legal Aid Helpline—help with civil (noncriminal) legal problems; call 866-219-5262 weekdays 8:30am–4:30pm and 5:30–8:30pm on Mondays and Thursdays; or apply online.

  • Senior Legal Helpline—help for those age 60+; call 877-579-7562 weekdays 9am–4pm; or apply online.

  • NC Navigator Helpline—get help enrolling in affordable health insurance on the Health Insurance Marketplace (HealthCare.gov); call 855-733-3711 weekdays 9am–5pm; or apply online.

  • Fair Housing Helpline—get help dealing with housing discrimination; call 855-797-3247 weekdays 9am–5pm; or apply online.

  • Battered Immigrant Helpline—immigrants who are victims of domestic violence can get help; call 866-204-7612 on Tuesdays 3:30–7:30pm and Thursdays 9am–1pm; or apply online.

MOBILE JUSTICE SMARTPHONE APP

There’s a new smartphone app called Mobile Justice NC that you can use to monitor and record police actions. We have the right to film the police, but always have your safety in mind when doing so. If an officer says that you’re in the way and tells you to get back, that might not the time to stand your ground and to say that you’re acting within your rights. Learn how to use the zoom-in feature so you can step out of the way and continue filming.

If you’re an activist or member of the media, download this free app and get familiar with Mobile Justice NC’s four features now (as opposed to during the heat of a protest or police action): 

  1. Record—Once you start recording, the audio/video files are automatically emailed to ACLU North Carolina—this makes it impossible to delete what you have filmed from your phone.

  2. Witness—You have the option of alerting nearby Mobile Justice NC app users so that situations can be captured from more than one point of view.

  3. Report—You can add details like descriptions, badge numbers, etc, and this data will be transmitted directly to ACLU North Carolina.

  4. Know Your Rights—Get an overview of your rights as a resident of North Carolina when stopped by law enforcement officers.​


​Click here to watch a short but in-depth explainer on how the app works (o clique aquí para más information sobre el app Justícia Móvil en español).

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DURHAM POLICE DEPARTMENT FORMS

You can also single out an officer who went out of his or her way to be helpful/come to your aid. Click on the badge below for instructions and to fill out the Durham Police Department Commendation Form.

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You can make a formal complaint online by filling out the blanks of this form and sending it in. Click on the badge below for instructions and to fill out the Durham Police Department Citizen’s Complaint Form.

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NC SAVAN

Crime victims and survivors often feel like they’re sitting on pins and needles while waiting to hear about upcoming trials and to get news on the status of perpetrators. NC SAVAN (North Carolina Statewide Automated Victim Assistance and Notification) is set up to keep them informed. A 24-hour, toll-free telephone number, 877-627-2826, is available for learning about an offender’s status and about victim-assistance resources. You can also call that number to register for the automated victim notification service. Once you’re registered, you can choose whether to get updates via automated telephone messages or emails; you can also download an app for your smart phone. Notifications can be delivered in English or Spanish, or you can have them translated into one of more than 100 available languages.

Click here to register for NC SAVAN or to search for offender information.