Evictions, strikes, and making rent during a pandemic

Listen 48:58
A pedestrian walks past graffiti that reads

A pedestrian walks past graffiti that reads "Rent Strike" Wednesday, April 1, 2020, in Seattle's Capitol Hill neighborhood. With millions of people suddenly out of work and rent due at the first of the month, some tenants in the U.S. are vowing to go on a rent strike until the new coronavirus pandemic subsides. Some cities have temporarily banned evictions, but advocates for the strike are demanding that rent payments be waived, not delayed, for those in need during the crisis. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

As the coronavirus continues to upend the job market, many people have started wondering how they will make their rent on the first of the month. And while local city officials have called for a moratorium on evictions, some want rent cancelled altogether. This hour we talk about who is being hit the hardest when rent and mortgages are due and why some are calling for city-wide rent strikes. The Philadelphia Inquirer‘s ELLIE RUSHING starts us off with a look at how some college students, trapped in leases they can no longer afford, are organizing for rent relief. Then, CityLab’s KRISTON CAPPS takes a broader look at how the pandemic is affecting housing all across the country. And we’ll talk with KADEEM MORRIS, a staff attorney in the housing unit at Community Legal Services, about the issues Philadelphia renters and homeowners are facing.

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