As in Spain, during the pandemic, many countries in the world have implemented measures that protect citizens when they pay for their homes, whether they are rented or owned. The United States, too, until now: A federal judge in Washington, DC, ruled Wednesday that the order issued by the CDC, which halted the evictions, is invalid and that, until now, it has not been in place.
According to the judge, the CDC exceeded its statutory authority by issuing a nationwide suspension of evacuation, a ruling that could affect millions of struggling Americans. In a 20-page document, District Judge Dabney Friedrich revoked the CDC order, which was first implemented during the coronavirus pandemic under the Trump administration and expired on June 30.
“The task of political authorities, not of the courts, is to assess the benefits of political measures designed to combat the spread of the disease, even during a global pandemic,” the order stated. The judge also reviewed whether the Public Health Services Act does not give the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention the legal authority to impose a nationwide moratorium on evictions.
Housing advocates have argued that the new ruling only throws more confusion into an already chaotic political space. Despite the moratorium, evictions continued due to various legal loopholes and interpretations.
After Wednesday’s decision, tenant advocates called on the Biden administration not only to defend the policy, but also to step up the legal protections that will keep people in their homes.
In response, the Biden administration indicated that it would appeal the decision. The ruling has no effect on stopping voluntary evictions at the state or local level. In Washington, DC, for example, the government’s express ban on all evictions remains in effect.