Confused about where things currently stand on emergency protections for renters in LA during covid-19? Here's a thread offering a quick summary of what's been accomplished, and what still needs to be done.
In the City of LA, the Mayor stepped up first with two orders that prevented evictions for nonpayment caused by covid-19, as well as no-fault and Ellis evictions. This was an important first step, and the Ellis protections are vital.
City Council eventually adopted an ordinance that codified the Mayor's directives, and added coverage of evictions for nuisance and unauthorized occupants and pets, and extended the repayment period to 12 months. These are important additions. The County adopted a similar order.
However, these eviction protections are still incomplete. They do not cover all grounds for eviction during the emergency - namely, breach of lease and nonpayment of rent where the tenant cannot prove a causal connection to the virus.
For many, especially informal & gig economy workers, it will be very difficult to secure the documentation to prove the connection to covid. It is an unfair burden to place on the most vulnerable.
Fixing these gaps is important, but the world's best eviction moratorium may only delay displacement for low-income renters who lost work during this emergency. So, tenants and organizers are also calling on state & local leaders to #CancelRent with rent+mortgage suspension.
The #HealthyLA coalition has been pushing for stronger tenant protections, in the form of a full eviction moratorium and rent+mortgage suspension at the City and the County. There has been some good movement in the past week, but we're not there yet.
The Judicial Council adopted an important rule that effectively puts put evictions on hold, other than those necessary for health & safety, for the duration of the emergency. But it does not establish any new tenant rights or defenses to an eviction when tenants are unable to pay
At the City, Council President Martinez introduced a motion on emergency renters's relief, and other councilmembers joined important motions to close gaps in the current eviction ordinance and freeze rent increases.
There were also two important steps on #CancelRent: (1) a resolution calling for state & federal action on rent+mortgage suspension; and (2) a motion to use the Responsible Banking Ordinance framework to prioritize banks that contribute to rent+mortgage suspension.
While state, federal, and financial institution leadership is important, the City is not powerless and the RBO could be an important opportunity for the City play a role. There are two RBO motions, but the motion by CM Bonin has stronger renter protections
HOWEVER, these are just motions at this point. They've been referred to committees (which aren't currently meeting) and won't have any effect until Council reconvenes to review department reports & take official action. Council is on recess & we don't know when it will next meet.
Unlike the City, the County Board of Supervisors is meeting this week - tomorrow to be precise. And on the agenda is a motion to strengthen and expand eviction protections county-wide. But we need calls to make this happen!
So, we have a complicated patchwork of eviction protections with gaps that still need to be filled. And we need a real commitment to #CancelRent with comprehensive mortgage+rent suspension. The County can take a big step tomorrow, but the City is stuck until council meets again.
Check out and join #HealthyLA to learn more about the full housing stability platform, as well as equally necessary protections for unhoused people and LA's workers during this emergency. And call on your elected officials to support stronger protections! 
You can follow @DougSmth.
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