Community leaders meet with RRHA after 52 unlawful detainers filed against residents

Community leaders meet with RRHA after 52 unlawful detainers filed against residents

RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - Community leaders met with officials from the Richmond Redevelopment and Housing Authority on Friday to discuss the start of the eviction process on 52 families in Creighton court.

On Tuesday, 52 unlawful detainers were filed against residents who have not paid rent in 90 days or more, which legally starts the eviction process.

“To me, the proof is in the pudding, and I want to see the proof as to what they are going to be doing to make sure they aren’t evicted,” Richmond Crusade for Voters President Bernice Travers said.

Members of the Richmond Crusade for Voters and pastors around the city met with the leader of RRHA Damon Duncan to get answers.

“We are here to make sure that the tenants in RRHA are treated fairly,” Pastor Rodney Hunter said.

“Putting people on the street, putting children on the street, putting seniors on the street is not the answers to this problem,” resident Cora Hayes said.

Duncan said his department is working with the residents to make sure they can stay in their homes.

“Several of the residents have paid rent. Several have made payment arrangements. We agreed when we met with the mayor’s office we would (be) referring residents to the eviction diversion program,” Duncan said.

In 2018, Richmond ranked No. 2 for the highest eviction rates in the nation. Many people think the eviction rates and high vacancy numbers are linked to trying to get people out so the buildings can come down.

“There’s no correlation between vacancies and eviction. Creighton has been under revitalization. Creighton has been under revitalization for a few years now. We have Armstrong Renaissance,” Duncan said.

Organizers say the fight for funding doesn’t stop here.

“National or state-level. We will go wherever we have to go to fight this problem. If it’s national, then we will go to Congress. If it’s a local problem, we will locally. If it states, then we will fight with the state. We aren’t backing down,” President of the Baptist Ministers Conference Emanuel Harris said.

There are more and more churches, organizations and city leaders vowing to pay and help those stay in their homes.

Community leaders will host a meeting in Creighton Court with the residents on Monday at 5 p.m.

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