UPDATED 1:30 PM PT — Friday, July 31, 2020
Crowds of protesters in New Orleans have taken matters into their own hands to halt evictions. The New Orleans Renters Rights Assembly organized an “Evict the Court” rally on Thursday.
Protesters blocked the entrance to the city’s courthouse and turned away anyone who attempted to enter the building. This all came as part of an effort to block landlords from filing eviction notices with the court.
Demonstrators protesting evictions have blocked off both enteranxes to first city court, which handles evictions on the east bank for rents less than $3000 (most New Orleans evictions) pic.twitter.com/O22wskFMA0
— Michael Isaac Stein (@misaacstein) July 30, 2020
The state’s eviction moratorium ended last month. 343 evictions have been filed since.
According to demonstrators, it is immoral to evict people from their homes amid the current economic climate and challenges surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We’re going to have a public health crisis if we put all of these people on the streets. Our COVID numbers are going to go up through the roof. So we need to like do two things: We either need to secure more rental assistance or we need to reclose eviction court.” – Frank Southall, protester
Despite the good intentions of these protesters, some courthouse employees were angered. Some claimed they had nothing to do with evictions and were just trying to get to work.