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The Pending Eviction Crisis

This year has been ...


The pandemic has caused many to struggle physically, mentally, emotionally, and financially. And although I’m sure we can’t wait for this horrific year to end, unfortunately several financial protections will also be coming to an end. Specifically, the end of the CDC‘s eviction moratorium is adding to the mounting stress and fear of people in America.

And if you have no clue what I’m talking about, I got you. Let me educate you on what’s about to happen to 5 million people at the end of January 2021.

Since, the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, the United States unemployment rate has continued to sky rocket. Many have lost their jobs or businesses due to Covid safety restrictions or mass layoffs. So many people have lost their jobs this year that in one week 3.3 million people filed for unemployment benefits, which led congress to pass the CARES ACT ( I’ll talk more about that in another post).


But weekly unemployment payments even in combination with CARES Act relief typically do not cover the average annual cost of living in many cities across the US (especially in the middle of a pandemic). As an additional protection, the CDC introduced a moratorium that essentially aimed to block most evictions (but renters are required to sign a CDC affidavit and submit the declaration before a judge to receive these protections) related to inability to pay rent. Pretty smart right? It’s definitely easier to keep people at home and safe from the virus if they actually have a home to stay in! But just because there’s been a pause on evictions does not mean that the bills have disappeared. According to The National Council of State Housing Agencies (NCSHA), by 2021 people in the United States will owe a combined $34 BILLION (yes I said billion) in past-due rent payments...



Take your time processing that one...


So if a new bill is not passed by our government, , the CDCs federal moratorium will end in January of 2021, and although some states have chosen to extend these protections, many people will be faced with a ridiculous amount of debt and pending eviction letters, all in the middle of a pandemic. And even before 2021, many have not benefited from the CDC's new policy. In fact, tens of thousands of people have still been evicted from their homes since September alone!


And while there is a proposed Covid relief bill that would extend the CDC's eviction protections for a little longer, there is still no word on when or if that bill will actually be signed. But even if that bill gets signed, its provisions are not a long term solution. I'm not even trying to be dramatic, but it kind of feels like putting a bandaid on someone who's just lost a limb! A LOT people are still going to be jobless, and in severe debt in a month's time. With an uncontrolled pandemic running rampant in the U.S, mass evictions truly are another public health crisis that could mean life or death for so many. Its frustrating to watch some of the millionaires working in our government argue over what is "enough for the people", then return back to their extravagant homes without real worry, while many Americans have, or will be forced into shelters during the worst health crisis in our lifetime.


So now we wait to see what this current administration, and the next will do for people facing homelessness during the Covid-19 pandemic. Fortunately, there are several organizations doing as much as they can to help. If you, or someone you know is facing eviction, please check out the links below!


JustShelter.org

Coalitionforthehomeless.org/



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