Protect Cleveland Renters on Day 1
Cleveland Mayor Elect Justin Bibb
Access to safe, healthy, affordable housing is a right of every Clevelander. In our city, renters make up 60% of households. The lives of Cleveland renters are directly impacted by the Mayor. Cleveland housing advocates and organizations are working together to ask Mayor Elect Justin Bibb to endorse deeply researched, community-informed, and little-to-no-cost renter protections that are ready to be introduced. Our next Mayor must take immediate action to protect renters on their first day in office. Sign your name to this petition to support the ask that the City of Cleveland:
Immediately pass Source of Income Protection Legislation: Cleveland renters deserve access to affordable housing
Immediately pass Pay to Stay Legislation: Cleveland renters deserve not be unfairly evicted
Develop Comprehensive Renter Protections: Cleveland renters deserve a Bill of Rights to address discrimination, prevent eviction, and improve quality and long-term affordability.
This petition was organized by advocates and organizations working to elevate renter protections in Cleveland including Cleveland Neighborhood Progress, Eden, Enterprise Community Partners, Fair Housing Center for Rights & Research, Lutheran Metropolitan Ministry, Neighbor Up, and the Northeast Ohio Coalition for the Homeless, and United Way of Greater Cleveland.
Cleveland Mayor Elect Justin Bibb
From: [Your Name]
Our community has the solutions to address discrimination and prevent eviction, we only need the political will to take these critical first steps to protect Cleveland renters. The lives of Cleveland renters are directly impacted by the Mayor and we are asking you to support deeply researched, community-informed, and little-to-no-cost renter protections that are ready to be introduced. As the next Mayor, we hope that you take immediate action to protect renters on your first day in office by addressing the following:
SOURCE OF INCOME PROTECTIONS: Today, it is legal in our city for a landlord to refuse to rent to a potential tenant because they are paying with a subsidy like Housing Choice Vouchers, disability benefits, Social Security, or even emergency rental assistance. Cleveland landlords outside of areas with a heavy concentration of existing housing subsidies deny housing to families with vouchers more than 95% of the time. Landlords who put “No Section 8” in rental ads are more likely to discriminate based on race. Source of Income Protections prohibit this discrimination. 19 states and dozens of counties and cities already have Source of Income Protections.
PAY TO STAY: Ohio is 1 of only 5 states in the country where a landlord can file an eviction against renters who are just one day late on rent. Even if the renter offered to pay the missed rent the day after it became late, the landlord can choose not to accept the late payment. Pay to Stay legislation would ensure that a landlord could not evict based on nonpayment of rent if the renter can present the full rent due plus late fees and court costs by the time of the eviction hearing. 9 cities across Ohio have passed Pay to Stay, including 4 municipalities here in Northeast Ohio.
DEVELOP COMPREHENSIVE RENTER PROTECTIONS: There are many more policies to address discrimination, prevent eviction, and improve quality and long-term affordability for renters. A grassroots and resident-led action group can and should develop a comprehensive Cleveland Renter Bill of Rights. A comprehensive Renters Bill of Rights would include but certainly not be limited to establishing Fair Chance legislation, expanding right to counsel, strengthening the eviction sealing and expungement process, increasing ongoing rental assistance, and utilizing strategic code enforcement to improve housing quality.