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Government/Politics

August Could Be A Bad Month In Ohio For Evictions, Housing Advocate Predicts

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Eviction moratoriums are over, the weekly $600 in federal assistance has expired and there are still hundreds of thousands of Ohioans out of work or making much less money than they did before the pandemic. The state’s leading advocate for the homeless and those in low-income housing says he’s very worried what’s ahead.

“I think August will be a bad month – it will probably be the worst month we’ve seen so far," said Bill Faith with the Coalition on Homelessness and Housing in Ohio.

In an interview for "The State of Ohio", Faith said census data shows 600,000 Ohio households may not be able to pay the rent or mortgage this month.

“That seems incredibly high but that’s what the researchers are telling us," Faith said.

Faith says the state’s new $15 million homelessness prevention grant program will help some families back into housing. But he’s also pushing the state to set aside $100 million in federal CARES Act funding for emergency rental assistance.

Faith says nearly all states have set up some program for rent assistance and mortgage assistance related to the pandemic, including Florida and Montana.

“Illinois did more than $300 million to address this issue. Our neighbors over in Pennsylvania did $150 million," Faith said. "About 40 states have set up some kind of state level program to provide rent assistance to their citizens and Ohio is not one of those yet."

The COVID-19 Eviction Defense Project says 20 million renters could be at risk of losing their homes, including 800,000 in Ohio.

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