Groups rally urging PA lawmakers to extend moratorium on rent and mortgage payments

Housing is Healthcare

PITTSBURGH, Pa., — Groups rallied Monday in Allegheny and Westmoreland counties, calling on state officials to extend the moratorium on rent and mortgage payments to further help residents affected by the coronavirus pandemic.

Gov. Tom Wolf’s moratorium on evictions was set to expire Aug. 31. Wolf extended the freeze in July but said he doesn’t have the authority to do so again.

In Pittsburgh, a roving demonstration of about two dozen cars left the Hill District and drove to the county courthouse, calling attention to what they call a health crisis.

Content Continues Below

“We need more time to get the rent relief into folks’ hands,” said Celeste Scott of Pittsburgh United. “There are a lot of barriers. We need more time.”

In Greensburg, demonstrators armed with signs stood outside the courthouse with a similar message.

Volunteers with the group Voice of Westmoreland helped organize today’s rally.

Laura Lash knows what it’s like to struggle and be forced to make difficult choices.

“It’s just a really big deal to us that wealth is distributed equally, that people aren’t worrying about whether or not they’re going to have a house, or have a meal (or) how they’re going to pay their rent and their mortgage,” Lash said.

The governor has scheduled a news conference Tuesday to urge state lawmakers to take action.

Joe Biden slams President Trump over nationwide violence in Pittsburgh speech