A National Moratorium on Housing Foreclosures and an End to Mortgage-Based Evictions

Rightly so, a Chicago area sheriff has refused to carry out any more evictions against renters suffering the consequences of mortgage-foreclosed landlords. According to CNN, Sheriff Thomas J. Dart blames mortgage companies and banks for not doing the investigative work to determine who actually resides in these homes before proceeding with forced eviction. “These mortgage companies … don’t care who’s in the building,” Dart said Wednesday. “They simply want their money and don’t care who gets hurt along the way.”

Eviction practices are consistently abusive (anyone remember Michael Moore’s, “Roger & Me”?). In Michigan, a grassroots group, Moratorium Now! is helping residents fight foreclosure and stay in their homes. For instance, Ms. Rubi Curl-Pinkins who lives near the famous Motown Museum in Detroit owned a paid off home but became a victim of predatory lending with Countrywide Mortgage. Unable to keep up with her new mortgage payments and medical expenses, Countrywide (which is owned by Bank of America) began eviction proceedings. At the last minute she was able to obtain a reverse mortgage so that she, a disabled senior, and her bedridden daughter could remain in their house. But Countrywide refused to stop the eviction. Through Moratorium Now! pickets and media reports, the eviction was halted and the family was able to stay.

But why must the halting of these forced evictions be handled one-by-one? Politicians and banks alike know that millions of families are facing similar situations. Michigan Welfare Rights Organization calls for a NATIONAL MORATORIUM ON HOUSING FORECLOSURES AND AN END TO MORTGAGE-BASED EVICTIONS! No community is served by having more of its residents evicted and homeless. We must work to keep people in homes and not allow banks to continue making profits off of the misery of low-income families.

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