NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (WAVY) — The coronavirus pandemic has led to furloughs and even layoffs for thousands of Virginians, as businesses closed their doors to stop the virus’ spread.
Now, some people are behind on rent and face the possibility of losing their home.
WAVY.com reported more than 11,000 eviction cases are pending in local courts, across the state. Housing advocates with the Virginia Poverty Law Center expect things to get worse as unemployment or stimulus money runs out. Even before the coronavirus outbreak, Hampton Roads had high eviction rates, which directly impacted Black and brown communities.
On Thursday at 7 p.m., Delegate Marcia Price (D-Newport News) will host an online eviction town hall.
“If you are unfortunately facing eviction there are resources available. There are people that are able to help. There’s information that you need in order to best protect yourself, should you go to the court,” explained Delegate Price.
Lawmakers have added some new protections for people facing eviction including:
- If you lost your job because COVID-19, you have the right to a 60-day delay on an eviction. You must bring proof of loss of income to court with you
- If you rent a property with federal financing, it is part of the federal moratorium on evictions and you cannot be served an eviction notice until July 31
Last week, Price and a dozen other delegates received an official outline of tenant and landlord rights from Attorney General Mark Herring. She plans to share this information during the meeting as well.
Price says if you cannot attention the virtual meeting, you should contact your local leaders.
“It’s important that you reach out to your Delegate or Senator because lived experiences, shared with me is how I got to some of the bills that I’ve carried to Richmond. So it’s really important that people continue to talk about what it is that they’re experiencing out in the world. Let us know, so that we can solve problems.”
Price adds she looks forward to introducing more bills during the August 18 session.
The event is free and open to the public. To attend, click here.