NEW ORLEANS (WGNO)— As if being behind on your rent wasn’t bad enough, some New Orleans residents are also being evicted because the place where they live have been hurricane damaged
Y. Frank Southall Jane Place Neighborhood Sustainability Initiative stated, “We’re hearing stories about that where tenants are being evicted because their landlords are refusing to come fix up their ceiling. Before Ida you had ceiling issues, and now the ceiling collapsed and people have to get out due to black mold and other issues.”
Clerk of Civil District Court Austin Badon says these cases point to a larger issue in the city and he’s asking all parties to work together.
“I’ve made an appeal to the landlords not to evict unless they absolutely have to evict. It goes back to the laws of supply and demand. Right now the demand for affordable, adequate, quality housing is extremely high, but the supply just isn’t there,” said Badon.
Throw in a hurricane to damage a lot of that supply and we have the perfect storm. Badon says that over 400 evictions await execution by judges in the city and he’s asking the for help in Baton Rouge.
“I’ve written a letter to Governor Edwards. asking him to continue the moratorium through October 29th, just so things can kinda settle down a little bit and people have more time to find quality affordable housing, said Badon.
The city has given out millions in renter’s aid to help alleviate the situation but housing advocates say much more needs to be done to help pay landlords back rent and provide renters rights to weather the double storm of the pandemic and hurricane.
According to Southall, “It’s not that this is a hard solution, but it takes up rolling up your sleeves. So longs as they’re not sustained focus, on the issues that working class tenants are dealing with, then we know that we’re not going to find a solution.”
For renters in need of legal assistance, call Southeast Louisiana Legal Services at 504-529-1000