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  15 Jan 2022, 12:22
Update : 15 Jan 2022, 12:38

Protests in New York as eviction moratorium due to end

NEW YORK, Jan 15, 2022 (BSS/AFP) - About 100 protesters turned out in
Manhattan Friday to demand the extension of a moratorium on rental evictions
in New York state, a day before it was due to end.

   The moratorium, granted in spring of 2020 by then governor Andrew Cuomo,
has been regularly extended since then, but current governor Kathy Hochul has
declined to do so after it is due to expire on Saturday.

   "You cannot allow a moratorium to lapse in the middle of winter, during a
COVID surge," said Jumaane Williams, a former Brooklyn council member and
himself a candidate for the post of governor.

   As in previous days in the run-up to the January 15 deadline,
demonstrators waved banners and chanted slogans in front of the public
library.

   "Housing is a human right" read one banner, while another brandished a
picture of Hochul with thewords, "Governor of evictions".

   "Tomorrow is the end of the eviction moratorium," said protest organizer
Sarah Lazuy. "It's unacceptable to start eviction proceedings against 250,000
people in the state of New York, when it's winter. And there's a pandemic
still going on. It's just unacceptable. "

   If the moratorium does end Saturday, "tens of thousands of women and
children of color in New York City are going to get evicted by their
landlords, are going to wind up on the streets are going to wind up in our
shelter system. And that just is not possibly right," said New York City
comptroller Brad Lander.

   Ex-governor Cuomo decided on a moratorium on rental evictions when New
York was the global epicenter of the pandemic in the spring of 2020.

   The city of nine million has suffered at least 34,000 deaths during the
pandemic.

   Rental and property prices in Manhattan and Brooklyn in particular are
astronomical, one of the downsides of daily life in the economic and cultural
capital of the United States. New mayor Eric Adams has made the fight against
New York's enormous socio-economic inequalities one of his priorities.

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