An attorney with a wealth of relevant experience and knowledge of the unique circumstances around the issues has been hired by Florida Rural Legal Services to oversee a new program designed to assist Indian River County residents facing COVID-related housing challenges such as evictions.
Iola Mosley will serve as FRLS’ Housing Attorney, leading the organization’s Housing Emergency Advocacy Response Team Program (HEART), an initiative underwritten by a grant from the John’s Island Community Service League (JICSL).
A graduate of Howard University, where she also earned her law degree, Mosley began her career with the office of the Public Defender in Palm Beach County. She also served as an assistant state attorney in the 15th Circuit; represented the Palm Beach County School Board for more than ten years in a variety of civil rights and administrative matters, and served as senior assistant city attorney for Fort Pierce for several years.
She comes to FRLS from a position with the Fort Pierce office of the Office of Criminal Conflict and Civil Regional Counsel, of the Fourth District Court of Appeals.
“FRLS is pleased to have Ms. Mosely join us as the lead attorney on the Indian River County HEART Project,” said FRLS Executive Director Jaffe Pickett. “This position will require not only ensuring emergency housing advocacy but also working with partners and the private bar to ensure residents facing housing challenges have the legal services needed during this emergency period as well as community outreach and education on eviction prevention.”
The HEART program provides clients with counseling, mediation and advocacy with landlords and lenders, and negotiate lease and mortgage modifications as necessary. Mosley will manage and conduct ongoing community outreach and education for the program through clinics, coordinate the work of attorneys from the Indian River County Bar Association (IRCBA) who volunteer as pro bono counsel, and collaborate with agencies providing rental and/or mortgage assistance.
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A non-profit organization established in 1966, FRLS provides free civil legal assistance to qualifying individuals within a 13-county service area in many areas of the law including evictions and landlord/tenant issues, foreclosure rights, public housing and housing discrimination, denial of public benefits, divorce, child custody and visitation, domestic abuse, debt collection and unfair loans, and immigration. The Fort Pierce office serves Indian River, St. Lucie, Martin & Okeechobee counties.