Activists demanded state and local officials extend protections for the some 400,000 people unable to pay rent during the coronavirus pandemic.
This is a rush transcript and may contain errors. It will be updated.
Jaisal Noor: Despite a deadly pandemic, eviction proceedings have resumed in Baltimore Maryland where tens of thousands of people, because of government inaction providing support, have been unable to pay their rent and are now facing eviction. As COVID-19 spreads uncontrolled, including over 1100 new cases reported today July 27th.
Speaker 2: Our landlord have got to go! Our landlord have got to go!
Terrell Askew: We don’t belong like this. We don’t deserve to live like this. Each one of us lives matter, everybody lives matter. How can we stand to stop the homeless and they still can’t cancel the rent.
Jaisal Noor: Dozens protested outside of Baltimore District Court in the morning. We spoke to a long time housing organizer Terrell Askew.
Terrell Askew: The eviction moratorium that was lifted on Saturday, that means that 300,000 people in the State of Maryland are facing eviction.
Jaisal Noor: Larry Hogan allocated 30 million for the state’s rental assistance program and another 10 million announced Friday for residents of state owned properties, but that doesn’t even begin to pay for most renters.
Terrell Askew: We want three things. We want 175 million put towards rental and eviction prevention. And keeping with states like Pennsylvania that put that much for their people. We know that our state got 1.3 billion in COVID relief funds and the Governor Hogan has put $30 million towards that. That’s absurd. I believe that’s $56 per family, that won’t go anywhere. We also want them to extend and expand the moratorium, make it where no one is getting evicted.
Jaisal Noor: Eviction proceedings have resumed for those facing eviction prior to COVID, those who can’t prove hardship due to COVID, or if your landlord is evicting you for a reason other than not paying rent.
Terrell Askew: Right now, we have people getting evicted on trumped up charges under emergency evictions. We’re in the middle of a once in a generation of pandemic. Yeah, there is no excuse for people to be getting kicked out of their homes. And then to add to that we have a homeless population who living in shelters and they simply cannot socially distance when they don’t have a home. We want them to be removed all people from those shelters and to never go back. Shelters is inhuman, is unconstitutional, is dishonest to all the people that they say they represent. We want rapid rehousing. These are fellow citizens. They should be treated with the same dignity that we would expect for ourselves.
Jaisal Noor: For The Real News this is Jaisal Noor with Cameron Granadino.
General Assignment Reporter
Jaisal is a host, producer, and reporter for TRNN. With his expertise in education policy and systemic inequity, he focuses on Baltimore, Maryland. He mainly grew up in the Baltimore area and studied modern history at the University of Maryland, College Park. Before joining TRNN, he contributed print, radio, and TV reports to Free Speech Radio News, Democracy Now! and The Indypendent.
Jaisal's mother has taught in the Baltimore City Public School system for the past 25 years.