WASHINGTON, D.C.—People’s Action today released the following statement by Homes Guarantee Campaign Director Tara Raghuveer in response to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) extending the eviction moratorium in areas with high COVID transmission rates:
“Today tenant organizers and champions like U.S. Rep. Cori Bush won a new eviction moratorium through tireless work, standing up against an administration and Congress that hung tenants out to dry by allowing the previous eviction moratorium to expire.
“While the Biden administration was right to extend the moratorium, this extension does not improve Trump’s old order—it’s a Band Aid over a bullet wound. This triage measure once again puts the burden on tenants to declare their need for protection, instead of making the eviction ban automatic. The new order does not apply to evictions that are not rent related; this means that many counties will still hear eviction cases and issue eviction judgments. And while this moratorium may provide some short term relief, in just a few months we will be in the same place we are today.
“Rental assistance has been a disaster, especially for the poor and working class people, Black and brown people, and women and families who need it most. Local, state, and federal officials must be held accountable for getting ERAP money to the people who need it. We should also acknowledge that this program is fundamentally a bailout for landlords that comes with no strings attached.
“This is not the time for incrementalism. We need structural change. We need a national tenants bill of rights, including universal rent control, a ban on source of income discrimination, and more. Ultimately, we need a Homes Guarantee. Today’s crisis demonstrates the urgent need to transform housing from commodity to guaranteed public good.”
People’s Action is a national network of 40 state and local grassroots, power-building organizations in 30 states, united in fighting for justice. We operate the largest progressive rural organizing project in the country. People’s Action and its member organizations coordinated one of the biggest distributed organizing programs in rural areas this past election season.