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The CDC Can and Must Act to Prevent National Eviction Crisis

The National Low Income Housing Coalition joined by over 1,500 organizations in urging the CDC to extend its eviction moratorium

WASHINGTON, DC– President Trump is threatening to oppose the bipartisan, bicameral COVID relief bill that passed Congress with an overwhelming majority of policymakers voting in favor.The bill includes an extension of the CDC eviction moratorium through January 31 and $25 billion in emergency rental assistance, both urgently and desperately needed protections for struggling renters. Three things can happen now: the president can sign, veto, or ignore the bill. He seems unlikely to sign the bill, given his sudden critique. If he vetoes the bill, Congress could easily override his veto. The far greater threat to the bill is inaction. If the president does nothing within 10 days of the bill’s enrollment (not including Sundays) and the start of a new Congress, then a “pocket veto” is in effect and the bill dies with the new Congress. For the COVID relief bill, the 10-day period runs past noon on January 3, when a new Congress begins. If the president does nothing, the bill dies at that time.

In the meantime, federal unemployment benefits for 12 million Americans expires today, funding for the federal government ends and the government shuts down at midnight on Monday, and the CDC federal eviction moratorium expires on December 31. At that point, tens of millions of people are at high risk of losing their homes, with catastrophic consequences for children, families, communities, and our country’s ability to contain the pandemic.

In the face of such uncertainty and potentially grave consequences, the CDC must use its authority to  extend its own eviction moratorium. Over 1,500 organizations from throughout the country joined NLIHC in calling on the CDC director to do so, but he has not yet acted.

NLIHC and the other signatories urge the CDC to ensure households can remain safely, stably housed throughout the duration of the pandemic. Without federal action, up to 30 million to 40 million renters could be at risk of losing their homes this winter after the federal eviction moratorium issued by CDC expires on December 31, during a deadly resurgence of the pandemic. When the current moratorium expires, an estimated $34 billion to $70 billion in back rent will become due, disproportionately impacting Black and Latino families. “Without immediate action, tens of millions of people could lose their homes, and the consequences will be catastrophic. Many will die, government spending will increase, and the ripple effects of evictions will harm families, children and communities for years,” said NLIHC President and CEO Diane Yentel. “When our collective health depends on our ability to stay in our homes, we all have a stake in ensuring tens of millions of renters don’t lose theirs.”

 “Evictions risk lives, push families deeper into poverty, and further strain the nation’s public health systems,” said Ms. Yentel. “In issuing the federal eviction order in September, the CDC made clear the connection between evictions and the nation’s ability to contain the coronavirus. When America’s lowest-income renters lose their homes, they have few options available to them, resulting in overcrowded conditions and homelessness. It becomes more difficult for them to practice social distancing or to self-quarantine after exposure to COVID-19. Recent research underscores the consequences: expiring state and local eviction moratoriums throughout the pandemic have already led to more than 400,000 additional COVID-19 cases and nearly 11,000 additional deaths. This crisis is as preventable as it was predictable, but only if acted on with urgency and precision.”

Read “Eviction Moratorium National Sign-On Letter” at:


About the National Low Income Housing Coalition:

The National Low Income Housing Coalition is dedicated solely to achieving socially just public policy that ensures people with the lowest incomes in the United States have affordable and decent homes. NLIHC educates, organizes, and advocates to ensure decent, affordable housing for everyone. For more information about NLIHC, please visit