Thousands of families on public assistance who are eligible for The Family Eviction Prevention Supplement, a New York-based program that pays back rent, were turned away, alleges a new lawsuit.
The Wall Street Journal reports that eight applicants filed a lawsuit earlier this month accusing the city and state of "creating an unduly burdensome and inadequate application system."
The plaintiffs have now received special dispensation to submit applications to the anti-eviction program and most have been approved. Funding cuts to city agencies prevented access to many needing help. Limited resources impacting staffing at the agencies resulted in an overwhelming backlog of eligible applicants preventing new applications from being reviewed .
Robert Doar, commissioner of the New York City Human Resources Administration, the city's welfare agency, told the Journal that the agency is working with the state on "initiatives which we believe will respond to the issues raised by the plaintiffs."
More than 18,000 formerly homeless New Yorkers were cut-off from another rent assistance program back in February, which likely contributed to the high demand for advocacy services.