On September 1, the Center for Disease Control(CDC) ordered a halt on evictions through the end of 2020. Like each moratorium that has come before this one, there are limitations on who is protected.
Under this federal moratorium, tenants threatened with eviction must make a declaration that if they were evicted, they would be homeless, forced into a shelter, or moving into cramped conditions. Tenants must also prove that they have lost their income due to COVID-19 and that they are making their “best efforts” to pay as much of their rent as possible. This last condition is a complete absurdity, as many working-class tenants who have lost their income cannot pay their rent whatsoever.
Politically, we must understand is extended moratorium as a reform. It is a change to the current political order of things, a seemingly benevolent amendment to the brutal capitalist system under which we currently live.
While many may see this moratorium extension as a good thing, we must expose this reform for what it is: the ruling class is giving out whatever crumbs it can manage and paying lip-service to the safety and well-being of tenants. It should also be understood that this moratorium will pacify potential rent-strikers and crush their want to struggle over time.
This kicking the can that we are witnessing is connected to tenants everywhere fighting back. The state fears us and knows the people will fight back, and we will. We are not responsible for the economic crisis nor are we responsible for the pandemic but working class will suffer the most. We know for a fact, landlords will look for loopholes around this, targeting families who haven’t paid but attacking other ways to evict them.
We cannot rely on the moratorium to protect our communities. It contains loopholes and we have seen many cases of eviction fall through the cracks, resulting in the reactionary and violent removal of working-class tenants from their homes, sometimes in a day’s notice.
The moratorium will not protect the tenants. Landlords will always find ways to be above the law, we have seen this in Los Angeles with a series of fake documents that landlords use to try and evict families. Landlords will try to threaten tenants into self-evicting, as we have seen in Austin, which one tenant boldly resisted.
This eviction moratorium exposes that the ruling class is scrambling to prevent any rebellion that would ensue if the millions of tenants threatened with eviction lost their homes. The legal system has protected landlords who have carried out illegal evictions, which continues to occur now at higher rates as this crisis intensifies. We will continue to raise our slogan, “No rent without work or wages!” as the ruling class continues to try to push their crisis on workers. We must organize to resist capitalism’s control over our communities!
UNDM is committed to organizing our communities, developing the rent strikes, meanwhile training and preparing to stop evictions ourselves. We must take this into our own hands, moratorium in place or not!
Organize, Defend, and Fight Back Against Evictions!
No Rent Without Work or Wages!