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Tuesday, August 10, 2021

Two In-Person St. Louis Rental Assistance Clinics Now Open

Posted By on Tue, Aug 10, 2021 at 3:44 PM

click to enlarge Mayor Tishaura Jones announced the relief efforts on July 29. - SCREENGRAB FROM MAYOR TISHAURA JONES  / FACEBOOK

With a temporary moratorium in place, Mayor Tishaura Jones and her administration are stepping up to the plate to take on the eviction crisis the city faces.

There are 3,000 eviction cases pending in the city sitting on the docket. Jones’ office released two locations that will host in-person rental assistance clinics Monday through Saturday beginning August 11.



The clinics will be hosted at Horizon Housing (3001 Arsenal Street, 314-865-0383) and Wohl Recreation Center (1515 North Kingshighway Boulevard, 314-367-2292). Horizon Housing operates Monday through Saturday, 9 a.m. to noon with additional evening clinics on Wednesday and Thursdays from 5:30 to 8 p.m. Wohl Recreation Center has the same schedule.

Just last week, Missouri Representative Cori Bush slept on the steps of the U.S. Capitol building in an act of protest. She aimed to bring Congress back to session to extend an expiring moratorium. After national attention was garnered by Bush and her colleagues who gathered on the steps, the CDC issued the moratorium that prevents evictions until October 3.

In response to Bush’s successful efforts, Jones and her administration began working to roll out the plan they had put into place just before Bush’s eye-catching protests began and the moratorium was put into effect. The rental assistance clinics are just one piece of Jones’ nearly $3 million plan allocated from city funds.

“Keeping families in their homes and off the streets plays a key part in helping stop the spread of COVID-19 and keeping our communities safe," Jones said in a press release. “Congresswoman Cori Bush fought to extend the federal eviction moratorium, and we are rolling our resources quickly to make sure families get the support they need."

Applicants are asked to bring a photo ID for the head of household, lease or documentation from their landlord, proof of St. Louis City residency and proof of financial hardship due to COVID-19.

The mayor’s office's press release says those who bring documentation will receive assistance more quickly, but residents can self-attest if they don’t have documentation. If a resident already has a pending application, they are asked to not attend the clinics.

According to the press release, the City of St. Louis Department of Human Services reports more than $1.46 million had been distributed in rental and utility assistance. Nearly two-thirds of that were going to households under 30 percent of the area median income and were covering an average of six months rent. The department estimates that as of July 31, the amount awarded to qualified households is closer to $2.2 million.

Another form of relief for St. Louis residents is on its way as well. The Board of Aldermen is expected to meet on August 11 at 10 a.m. to approve Board Bill 2, a spending plan for federal COVID-19 relief money. Board Bill 2 will then go back to the mayor’s desk for final approval. The bill totals $168 million and includes direct cash payments to St. Louis residents in need.

The mayor’s office continues to encourage residents in need of rental and utility assistance to dial 211, call 800-427-4626 or email 211cares@stl.unitedway.org.

Follow Jenna on Twitter at @writesjenna. Email the author at jenna@riverfronttimes.com
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