At first blush, it appeared that Jonah had no legal grounds to stop his eviction.
Jonah, a single father of two, had attended MWLS’ eviction clinic to learn about his options. Frustrated and discouraged, Jonah thought that there was nothing left to do- he simply could not afford his rent. However, after further questioning, MWLS' housing attorney learned that Jonah had lost a Section 8 voucher that had made a significant difference in his monthly budget. The attorney also learned that a local housing authority had terminated Jonah’s voucher because he had been late on a few payments.
Jonah owed $1,200 which he had agreed to pay at the rate of $75/month. He had stuck to the repayment schedule as best he could, but after ten months, he was a total of 11 days late. The housing authority terminated his voucher but failed to document any mitigating circumstances, such as the fact that Jonah is a disabled father caring for two children.
The attorney sent a letter to the housing authority asking them to reconsider their decision or face possible court action. Shortly after the letter was sent, Jonah's voucher was reissued.
Currently, Jonah and his children are staying in an overcrowded unit out of the local area while he searches for a new three-bedroom unit. The reinstatement of his voucher means that eventually Jonah and his kids will be living in safe and stable housing once again.