After Facing Imminent Eviction, Strangers Cleared Her Debts

Eviction Notice with gavel
Via Flickr
Zain Murdock
August 13, 2021

On August 3, Dasha Kelly waited on pins and needles, anticipating a forceful eviction from her home. After losing her job due to COVID-19, she joined the 11 million Americans struggling to pay back rent. 

But Kelly faces another struggle – that you might, too.

According to several studies, Black renters and neighborhoods see far more evictions than their white counterparts. Across 39 states, the average is 2x as high, but some states show disparities like 4x.

And COVID-19 exacerbated the dangers of getting evicted.

Black people are almost 3x as likely to die of COVID-19, and evictions led to over 400,000 cases of the virus. Making it worse? Black people are both disproportionately unhoused AND criminalized for being unhoused. 

But there’s a silver lining to this story.

In just 24 hours, strangers crowdfunded $170,000 to help Kelly pay back rent for herself and her boyfriend’s children. Since she only needed $2,000 to cover the costs, she says she’ll pay it forward for “the next person” in her situation.

This beautiful act of kindness will now keep Kelly and other families off the streets for sure. But what if we lived in a country that didn't criminalize eviction? Or leave anyone without housing at all? That's a future we can not only dream about, but that we deserve.

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