Eviction Hearings Quietly Resuming Across Metro Atlanta
Thousands of metro Atlanta renters hit hardest financially by the pandemic are now at risk of being evicted as court hearings resume for the first time since the coronavirus struck.
“People were already suffering before. When the pandemic happened, it just snowballed,” said Monica DeLancy, a tenants’ rights advocate and founder of a renters association in Cobb County’s Riverside area.
Organizations that assist the homeless and others seeking housing resources said they are bracing for a possible “crisis” over housing as the eviction cases are addressed.
To help renters who may be displaced, the Atlanta Legal Aid Society plans to hire paralegals and place them in local courts. Under the new “Navigators” program, the Legal Aid employees plan to help tenants find new housing, employment, or access to other resources to get them back on their feet, said Kristin Verrill, the director of grants and innovation at Atlanta Legal Aid.
“Now the need really exists in a more dramatic way,” she said, adding that they hope to help 6,000 people over the next two years.