Public health experts worry that thousands in Arizona may be in trouble as eviction moratorium nears expiration while cases still surge
Arizona's eviction moratorium is set to expire on July 22, and advocates are urging Gov. Doug Ducey to extend it. Ducey said he does not intend to extend the moratorium, the Associated Press reported. One study found that more than 577,000 Arizonians could be at risk of eviction by September. Advocates of extension said the moratorium should be extended since $4 million of the state's $5 million rental assistance program has yet to be dispersed. About 1,100 of the 17,000 residents that applied for rental assistance have received it. Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.
Arizona recorded more than 3,250 coronavirus cases on Wednesday, as housing groups continued to advocate for an extension of the state's eviction moratorium, which is set to expire next week, potentially leaving thousands of Arizonians homeless during a pandemic and in blistering hot temperatures, the Associated Press reported. "It's so hot in Arizona, you cannot live outside if you lose your home," Meghan Heddings, executive director of Family Housing Resources in Tucson told the AP. "And, of course, we're still in the middle of a pandemic." However, Gov. Doug Ducey said he does not intend to extend the moratorium, according to the AP. According to AZCentral the eviction moratorium expires on July 22 and would leave as many as 5,000 renters in Maricopa County alone at the risk of eviction. While the moratorium was supposed to help ensure those who caught the coronavirus or lost their job during the pandemic weren't evicted, many advocates say that as cases continue to climb, and the state becomes a hotspot, it's too early to lift the ban on evictions. The state has the highest rate of infections per capita across the nation, the AP reported. By the end of September, more than 577,000 renters could be at risk of eviction in Arizona, the Aspen Institute found. The same report found that across the nation around 20 million renters could be at risk of losing their homes. Advocates have argued that the moratorium should be extended on grounds that the almost 80% of the $5 million allocated to assist those struggling with rent has yet to be dispersed. According to AZCentral, in March, the state launched a rental assistance program where landlords could get up to $2,000 a month for each renter who is eligible. Only about 1,100 of the 17,000 residents that applied for rental assistance have received it. An Aspen Institute analysis of data from the University of Arizona James E. Rogers College of Law found that approximately $3 billion would be needed across the state to address the potential consequences of eviction such as the need for homeless shelters and emergency health care, "We have to get more time so this doesn't become a catastrophe," Stacy Butler, director of the Innovation for Justice Program at the University of Arizona's James E. Rogers College of Law, told the AP.Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: Inside London during COVID-19 lockdown
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