Families facing eviction are breathing a sigh of relief after the Biden administration announced a short-term solution, a new 60-day freeze on evictions in areas hit hardest by COVID-19.
The deadline for the most recent eviction moratorium passed over the weekend, causing many Democrats to call out the administration for failing to extend the protection.
Initially, the White House said it didn’t have any authority to extend the moratorium because Supreme Court ruled in June that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention could not grant a fourth extension. Now, in a controversial use of executive power, the administration claims to have legal authority for a new and limited moratorium.
“The president shares their desire, commitment and interest in keeping renters and people in their homes, and that is why he took the steps to ask the CDC to look into what legal pathways forward there were,” Psaki said.
As the 60-day countdown begins, billions of dollars designed to help struggling tenants and landlords remain unclaimed. Monday, the administration placed blame on individual states for slacking in the rollout of federal dollars given to them via the American Rescue Plan and Emergency Rental Assistance Program. Wednesday, Psaki commended the state of Virginia for leading the nation, helping 223 million tenants and landlords in need. Still, the burden remains as billions of dollars remain undistributed. Click here to find rental assistance in your area.
Meanwhile, homeless shelters are now bracing for a potential surge in homelessness. Union Mission in Norfolk, VA is already close to capacity. Rev. John Gray, executive director, says despite uncertainty, he has faith God will guide the organization through this stressful season.
“Homelessness can be a mystery,” said Rev. Gray. “How do we do this work? You do it relationally, person-to-person, one-on-one, and with the Lord’s help of course. You are more than your address. When someone’s homeless, there’s a profound impact on not only that person, but their family and extended family.”
After living on the streets on Washington D.C., John Haley shared his story of homelessness with CBN, giving God and Union Mission the credit for saving his life.
“It saved my life, the mission is saving lives,” Haley said. “What they do here is wonderful. I can organize in my head, steps to get out of this situation. It’s a great place to quiet your mind.”
Haley said he’s one of the lucky ones to receive help, understanding millions of Americans will soon face the harsh reality of living on the streets.
Ministries across the nation now face a 60-day deadline to prepare for an influx of homeless people. Rev. Gray is reminding the public about the importance of supporting shelters in your area.
“Even when this is all over, we’re still going to be serving the community,” said Rev. Grey. “People will always be impacted by homelessness and we’re going to need the communities help.”