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NYC neighborhoods with highest rates of COVID-19 expected to be slammed by evictions, report finds

Posted at 5:08 PM, Jun 25, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-25 18:42:54-04

NEW YORK — The neighborhoods that have the highest rates of COVID-19 will also have the highest levels of homelessness after the eviction moratorium is lifted in August, according to a new housing report.

It’s the perfect eviction storm, one advocacy group said. They are offering insights and solutions here.

The nine page report, “NYC Housing Affordability and Homelessness Crises Exacerbated by COVID-19," was put out by Citizens' Committee for Children of New York. Associate Executive Director Raysa Rodriguez predicted what she called a “tsunami of evictions” when the moratorium is lifted in August, unless action is taken now to help families.

“The big elephant in the room is what happens after this moratorium," Rodriguez said. "How are we going to make sure there isn’t a surge in homelessness?"

The report compared COVID-19 hot spots with neighborhoods with severe rent burden, people paying over 50 percent of their income to rent, rental overcrowding and families with children in homeless shelters.

The report predicted the top NYC neighborhoods that will have a surge in evictions in August are East Tremont in the Bronx; Elmurst, Corona and Jackson Heights in Queens and East New York and Brownsville in Brooklyn.

Jihan Perez is from Brownsville and is part of a group called the Urban Male Leadership Academy. August, Perez said, could be catastrophic month for her community.

“At this point we don’t have solutions. Something has to happen now,” Perez said.

Rodriguez said prevention is key.

Possible solutions to the eviction wave, according to the report, include: more investment into permanent affordable housing, more rental assistance vouchers and a quicker response of social service agencies in placing families in shelters to permanent housing.