Below are a list of resources for parents and families who need help with housing issues.
· Apply for HEAP Benefits: The 2020-2021 Regular HEAP benefit season will be open from November 2nd, 2020 through March 15th, 2021. Recipients of HEAP benefits may receive one regular HEAP benefit per program year to help pay for heating costs. To apply, please contact 212-331-3126. Applications will soon be available on ACCESS HRA to download and mail back to HRA. There is no need to go into an HRA Center. The completed application can be mailed back to HRA at: NYC DSS/HRA/HEAP, PO Box 1401, Church Street Station, New York, NY 10008.
· Federal Action Halting Residential Evictions: On September 1st, the federal Department of Health and Human Services/Centers for Disease Control invoked its powers under public health law to announce a “Temporary Halt in Residential Evictions to Prevent the Further Spread of COVID-19,” effective through December 31st, 2020. The rule took effect on September 4th, when it was published in the Federal Register. Read more here and here. This federal moratorium offers no monetary relief to landlords, may be superseded by local or state law that provides more protections, and comes with strict eligibility requirements. Consult a housing advocate (see below) to determine if this new rule will help you.
· NYC Tenant Resource Portal: The NYC Tenant Resource Portal is the City’s first-ever online resource to help residential renters access free resources from the City to help prevent evictions and keep tenants stably housed. Tenants who do not have access to the internet can call 311 and ask for the “Tenant Helpline,” which was launched in partnership with 311 and HRA’s Office of Civil Justice (OCJ) where they will be connected to a PEU Tenant Support Specialist to receive free, individualized assistance.
· Senior Rental Assistance Increase Exemption (SCRIE): While the SCRIE Unit office at HPD remains closed to the public, seniors can submit applications and ask questions by email at SCRIE@hpd.nyc.gov or by mail, at SCRIE Unit 100 Gold Street, Room 7M-3 New York, NY 10038.
· Section 8 Vouchers: While the HPD Section 8 Customer Service Office is closed to the public, the HPD Section 8 team is still available for remote service. Voucher holders facing rent hardships due to drops in income should email DTRAI@hpd.nyc.gov or fax at 212-863-5299. During this time, any HPD Section 8 voucher set to expire will be automatically renewed. Clients do not need to reach out to HPD for an extension. All subsidy terminations in process are suspended until further notice. All tenant conferences and briefings are postponed and will be rescheduled. All hearings for appeal are cancelled until further notice. HPD will continue to pay the subsidy until final determinations are made.
· NYCHA Update: Tenants can find the latest COVID resources for NYCHA residents here.
· NYC Landlord-Tenant Mediation Project: The Landlord-Tenant Mediation Project provides housing security to tenants across the City who may be facing hardship due to the pandemic. Through this project, non-profit Community Dispute Resolution Centers (CDRCs) will assist tenants and small landlords in finding solutions to rental issues due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Learn more here. (https://www1.nyc.gov/office-of-the-mayor/news/535-20/mayor-de-blasio-taskforce-racial-inclusion-equity-citywide-landlord-tenant)