2015 Giving Challenge

Gulfcoast has reached our goal for the 2015 Giving Challenge!  We have received a total of $5,200 in donations from 45 donors.  This is wonderful!  It is also wonderful that the Community Foundation of Sarasota County and Patterson Foundation, along with their partners the William G. and Marie Selby Foundation, John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, Manatee Community Foundation and the Herald-Tribune Media Group, came together to make this all possible.  Through these generous organizations, most of our donations will be matched dollar for dollar -- essentially doubling our total.  This is Grand!  Just think of the services we will be able to provide clients who are vulnerable and unable to afford a private attorney.  Thanks to all our supporters!!!

John Dubrule receives appreciation from InterCultural Advocacy Center and St. Petersburg College Clearwater Campus

On July 31 2015, the InterCultural Advocacy Center in partnership with St. Petersburg College, Clearwater Campus hosted a one day conference about promoting inclusion. The conference offered participants the opportunity to examine what diversity means and to study the ways it is reflected in their real lives, in our organizations and in our communities. Presentations explored differences, proposed new ideas to enrich communication across diverse groups and decreased barriers that hinder workplace productivity or impaired the effective delivery of services and products. John Dubrule was one of celebrated presenters and was presented with this notable award at for his participation in this powerful day.


Wage Theft Ordinance Moves Forward in Pinellas County

On July 30, 2015, John Dubrule, Gulfcoast Legal Services’ Executive Director appeared before the Pinellas County Commission and spoke in favor of the passage of a Wage Theft Ordinance. Wage theft, or wage disputes, occurs when employers withhold the earnings or benefits of employees. It often affects low-income workers, particularly in service industries such as restaurants and hotels, and in construction. Gulfcoast has been very involved in developing a solution for these workers. The Commission voted to approve moving forward with an Ordinance.  Read more about it at:  http://www.tampabay.com/news/localgovernment/pinellas-county-commission-gives-initial-nod-to-wage-theft-ordinance/2239399


Making A Difference

Adriana Dinis is making a difference in our award winning GLS CHILD Program! That's right! We won the runner up award for the Paul Doyle Prize at the recent Florida Bar Foundation Meeting. We are very honored by their choice, but we are also honored that Adriana, a highly talented and dedicated attorney, continues to work with us to make this a successful program. GLS CHILD serves hundreds of children and youth who without this program would have no advocate for their cause. (7/2015)

Making A Difference Too!

Mr. David Rosenburg, an Emeritus Attorney in GLS' Sarasota office, has been volunteering since 2005 helping seniors with their legal problems. He defends and negotiates debt collection issues for seniors, defends against consumer scammers who target seniors, assists with landlord tenant cases, and gives advice and counsel regarding almost every sort of civil legal issue our senior clients face. We are very proud of Mr. Rosenberg who at 94 years of age is our Senior Volunteer and a WW II Veteran. (7/2015)

Hillsborough County Commissioners are taking up the issue of wage theft.   Commissioner Kevin Beckner pitched an ordinance after a presentation of that county's damning wage theft statistics showed 4,705 reported cases between September 2008 and January 2011, for a total of $3,266,775 in wages lost.  The average amount recovered was $694 -- the bulk of one month's rental payment for many people.

John Dubrule, Executive Director of Gulfcoast Legal Services, was quoted in a recent article in Creative Loafing Tampa as saying, "I applaud the [Hillsborough] County Commission for addressing this because many other counties have not done that," he said.  "So, I think that even though there's a debate as to how to come out on this, it's evidence that they're trying to address the issues of low-wage workers."

Read more about this issue at http://cltampa.com/politicalanimal/archives/2015/06/10/land-of-the-lost-wages-addressing-the-problem-of-wage-theft#.VYAib1LnJ8I


June 2015


2015 Child Protection Summit Workshop

Gulfcoast Legal Services representative will be presenting this year at the 2015 Child Protection Summit Workshop in Orlando. Adriana Dini has been chosen as a workshop presenter for a presentation titled Immigrant Children in our Communities: How Community Alliances Can Put Prevention into Practice. This conference is scheduled for September 9th to the 11th. More information about the conference will be forthcoming. Congratulation Adriana!




12th Annual Fair Housing Symposium on April 17, 2015

 Gulfcoast Legal Services is a member of the Consortium and Mary Rooney, Clearwater’s Managing Attorney, attended and volunteered at the event. The event provided fair housing information useful for housing providers, real estate agents, property managers, attorneys, government officials, apartment personnel, and the general public. The topics covered were Persons with Disabilities & Service and Assistance Animals, Assistance Animals & The Law, Cultural Diversity and a Panel of Experts answered questions from the audience.



  Jena Blair, Mary Rooney, Ramon Carrion, John Dubrule     

GLS Board President, Ramon Carrion, was awarded the Sixth Judicial Circuit award as the most outstanding pro bono attorney of the year. Ramon was cited for his work as the President of both the Intercultural Advocacy Center and Gulfcoast Legal Services along with hundreds of hours given on behalf of low income immigrants with immigration problems. John Dubrule, Executive Director of Gulfcoast Legal Services said of our Board President: “We are very proud of you Ramon. Well done!!!” More information may be found at:




John Dubrule, Chief Operating Officer of Gulfcoast said, "St. Pete became the first city in Florida to pass a Wage Theft Ordinance!!! The sunlight shines on the Sunshine City tonight!!!" 

Gulfcoast Legal Services Board Member James Fox said, "This is a real accomplishment for the client base of Gulfcoast and a great example of how strategic, proactive efforts can really pay off." 

That's right, many leaders of St. Petersburg came out to the City Council meeting on April 17 to support this measure.  The ordinance will provide an administrative process for individuals who completed work, but were told by their employer they would not receive the agreed upon wage.  St. Petersburg is leading by example.  For more information, please follow this link:  http://www.tampabay.com/news/localgovernment/tonight-st-pete-to-vote-on-measure-that-would-let-city-intervene-in-wage/2225850.

John Dubrule