Iowa Legal Aid says more people seeking help as eviction deadline looms

Published: Mar. 16, 2021 at 10:22 PM CDT
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - Iowa Legal Aid said it’s seeing more calls as federal eviction protections are set to run out.

11,000 eviction cases have been filed in the state since the start of the pandemic, and Iowa Legal Aid has seen a 140% increase in calls to stop an eviction compared to the last six years.

The CDC is currently offering federal eviction protection through the end of March. After that deadline, it is up to Congress to pass additional funding. If the program runs out of money, Erika Petersen, with Iowa Legal Aid, said it could have a huge impact in the state.

“It’s sort of hard to fathom how challenging it is to fear that you’re no longer going to have a safe place to live,” Petersen said. “And then add on top of that, many of these most vulnerable people for evictions also are vulnerable to COVID-19 for lots of various reasons.”

While the eviction moratorium was not extended as part of President Joe Biden’s recently-passed COVID-19 relief plan, it did include money for eviction relief.

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