With Covid-19 resurgent, advocates call on Baltimore to again suspend evictions
by Fern Shen
Published January 4 in Baltimore Brew
Excerpt: Calling the current surge of Covid-19 cases in Baltimore a public health emergency, advocates for tenants called on Mayor Brandon Scott, Sheriff John Anderson and Administrative Judge Hallee Weinstein to suspend evictions in the city.
“There are 352 evictions scheduled by the sheriff for this week. There will be hundreds scheduled for the weeks to come,” Public Justice Center attorney Matt Hill said today, at a virtual news conference held by Baltimore Renters United (BRU).
The lawyers who represent renters, Hill said, know all too well how evictions multiply the impact of the pandemic on vulnerable people.
“If tenants are evicted, they are forced to live in close quarters, in shelters, doubled up with family or friends or on the streets,” he continued. “You cannot quarantine and shelter at home if you have no home.”
In making his plea, Hill pointed to the soaring hospitalization rate and the positivity, which stands at 34% in Baltimore right now, which he called “one of the highest rates in the state.”
In the early days of the pandemic, Sheriff Anderson and then-Mayor Bernard C. “Jack” Young, along with a district judge, moved to halt evictions.
Fair Housing Advocates Urge Baltimore Officials to Stop Evictions Amid Omicron Surge
by Bennett Leckrone
Published January 4 in Maryland Matters