President Trump’s executive order this past weekend regarding housing is of little use in addressing the magnitude of the housing crisis we are facing in this country. At its worst, it misleads renters to think they are going to be protected, when the opposite is the case.
The latest research indicates that 30 to 40 million people could face eviction by the end of 2020 if Congress will not act. In a recent issue of the journal Pediatrics, a group of pediatricians documents the deleterious effects of homelessness on the health of children. The pandemic and accompanying economic crisis is only making matters worse. These pediatricians emphasize that having adequate housing is a critical aspect of healthcare right now, because losing secure shelter increases the risk of infection. We should be investing in and protecting our children, not placing them at risk.
Our Congressional delegation from North Dakota needs to recognize the urgency of the housing crisis, set aside partisan politics and join with the minority party to create bipartisan legislation that can offer desperate Americans hope. With this end in mind, Senators John Hoeven and Kevin Cramer should support $100 billion in rental assistance, $11.5 billion to address the needs of the homeless and a year’s moratorium on evictions and foreclosures. No one should be turned out of their home with no resources in the midst of a pandemic. Time is running out.