Biden extends the nationwide eviction ban till March 2021

President Joe Biden will deliver his inaugural address on the Western Front of the U.S. Capitol on January 20, 2021 in Washington, DC. During today’s dedication ceremony, Joe Biden becomes the 46th President of the United States.

Alex Wong | Getty Images

President Joe Biden on Wednesday extended the federal ban on evictions through March 2021 with an executive measure in one of his first acts after his inauguration.

The eviction ban has helped millions of Americans fight amid the coronavirus pandemic. The eviction moratorium expired at the end of the month.

The move is one of a long list of actions Biden took after he was sworn in as President of the United States, including a lengthy hiatus in paying student loans, resuming the Paris climate agreement, and withdrawing various from the Trump administration .

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It is estimated that 14 million Americans are behind on their rent during the crisis. In addition to extending the eviction ban until March, Biden is expected to urge Congress to maintain the moratorium until September 2021.

Research has shown that evictions in one area lead to significantly more coronavirus cases and deaths.

“This is a time when it is no exaggeration to say that eviction can lead to death for many people,” said Helen Matthews, communications manager at City Life Vita Urbana, a Boston nonprofit.

Proponents say extending the eviction ban is only a first step and that enforcement is also needed to ensure landlords comply with the law.

“The existing moratorium is flawed and some landlords are using loopholes to evict tenants despite the protection,” said Diane Yentel, president and CEO of the National Low Income Housing Coalition, in a statement. “No federal agency enforces the Order’s penalties for illegal evictions.”

In addition, there is increasing demand to coordinate the ban with adequate rent support so that an eviction crisis is prevented and not just delayed. So far, Congress has provided $ 25 billion in rental support, but after months of record job losses, rent arrears could be closer to $ 100 billion.

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