New York has not received its fair share for the program – the state has gotten over $2.6 billion, but more than 500,000 New York families still need help while dollars from the $45 billion pot sit unused
The City will be surging resources to its tenant helpline, and the Right to Counsel program is prepared to provide free legal assistance to any eligible New Yorker facing eviction proceedings
With expanded outreach efforts and new video, Mayor Adams encourages tenants to know their rights about eviction
Mayor Eric Adams today called for an immediate infusion of funds for New York’s Emergency Rental Assistance Program from the United States Treasury Department. He also announced new measures to bolster tenant protections and inform tenants of their rights with significant outreach efforts.
“The federal government has the resources, and now it is time for them to take action with an immediate infusion of funds for the Emergency Rental Assistance Program,” said Mayor Eric Adams. “New York has gotten the very short end of the stick, and I am joining Senator Schumer and Governor Hochul in demanding that change. In addition, I am encouraging everyone to take advantage of all the resources available to you, know your rights, and protect yourself against eviction.”
“The Covid-19 pandemic created a housing crisis leaving thousands of New Yorkers concerned about being evicted from their homes. With the state-wide eviction moratorium set to end this Saturday, we are making a push to improve access to free tenant support for all New Yorkers, regardless of lease or immigration status,” said Sheena Wright, Deputy Mayor for Strategic Initiatives. “Our Public Engagement Unit will fulfill the Mayor's promise of improving access to services and support by meeting tenants at their doors, on their phones, and in their communities to connect them to critical City services and help those facing eviction get access to free legal support.”
Mayor Adams outlined the following steps to support tenants:
- Mayor Adams urged the Treasury Department to reallocate unused Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) funds from other states to New York, where hundreds of thousands still need help, and get the funds out the door.
- The City will be surging resources to the Mayor’s Public Engagement Unit’s (PEU) Tenant Helpline, which is staffed by the PEU Tenant Support Unit. New Yorkers can access the helpline by calling 311 and asking for the Tenant Helpline.
- The City’s Right to Counsel program is prepared to provide free legal assistance to any eligible New Yorker, no matter what neighborhood they live in. The program has a proven track record of providing quality legal representation to New Yorkers who need it and boosting their success rate in Housing Court. See the Right to Counsel and Illegal Lockouts webpage for more resources.
- Mayor Adams launched a campaign to inform tenants of their rights, connect them to resources, and prepare frontline staff to provide the necessary support, including with a new video released today.
- In the Mayor’s Office to Protect Tenants (MOPT) COVID-19 Fact-Sheet, tenants can now find all the information they need about the expiration of the evictions moratorium, ERAP, Right to Counsel, illegal lockouts, and City resources available to keep them stably housed. Tenants can also use the City’s Tenant Resource Portal to learn more about the process of eviction in New York City, what to do when getting a Notice of Eviction, and how to access the City’s resources to fight it.
- PEU will be conducting direct outreach to tenants at risk of eviction to inform them of their rights and connect them to support. In order to meet New Yorkers where they are, and ensure every tenant has access to free legal counsel, PEU will run targeted outreach by phone, text, and door-to-door canvasing to tenants who are currently in Housing Court or have a pending case.
- In partnership with PEU, MOPT, the Department of Housing and Preservation Development (HPD), and the Human Resources Administration’s (HRA) Office of Civil Justice (and legal providers), the City is also launching a paid media campaign to help get the word out about illegal lockouts and the right to counsel, and to encourage tenants who are in need of assistance to contact PEU’s Tenant Helpline.
New York State received over $2.6 billion in emergency rental assistance. But more than 500,000 New York families still need help, including more than 50,000 New York City Housing Authority (NYHCA) households, while some of the $45 billion in federal emergency rental assistance remains unspent.
“Throughout the pandemic, our dedicated staff at DSS-HRA and our not-for-profit legal provider partners have done invaluable work connecting New Yorkers experiencing housing instability to the resources and services needed to stay in their homes. As we approach the looming expiration of the region’s eviction moratorium, this Administration stands ready to support any New Yorker who is facing eviction or behind on their rent, including through our City’s first-in-the-nation Right to Counsel program, which will help vulnerable New Yorkers fight unlawful evictions, keep their homes, and avoid homelessness altogether,” said Gary Jenkins, Commissioner of the Human Resources Administration (HRA).
“More than ever, it is critical that New Yorkers know their rights and can take advantage of the many City resources available to respond to the threat of eviction. Protecting tenants is a key tenet of HPD’s mission and we look forward to working with the Mayor’s Office to Protect Tenants, the Public Engagement Unit, and HRA’s Office of Civil Justice to help connect families to the support they need to stay stably housed,” said AnnMarie Santiago, Acting Commissioner of the Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD).
“We know that if you’re worried about losing your home, the last thing you should have to worry about is navigating a complicated City bureaucracy. That's why my team at the Mayor's Public Engagement Unit is proactively reaching out to tens of thousands of NYC tenants to make sure they know about their rights and have access to resources that help them stay in their homes,” said Adrienne Lever, Executive Director of the Mayor's Public Engagement Unit (PEU).