Housing Courts Must Change! Campaign

WHAT WE’RE FIGHTING FOR

Housing Courts Must Change! (HCMC) is a statewide campaign launched by the Right to Counsel NYC Coalition in 2020 to transform the courts from an “eviction machine” to a place that holds landlords accountable, upholds tenants’ rights, and enables tenants to remain in their homes. Our goals, during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond, include slowing down eviction cases and expanding Right to Counsel across the state, so ALL tenants have and know about their rights and are emboldened to organize and fight to stop evictions.  

OUR GOALS

•  No evictions for anyone across NY State.  

•  Close Housing Courts and before they reopen:

  • Ensure that everyone facing eviction has and knows about the Right to Counsel.  
  • Slow down eviction cases to ensure that tenants are protected. 
  • Hold landlords accountable.
  • Prioritize health, safety, and accessibility. 

Read more about our demands here

OUR DEMANDS

The COVID-19 pandemic has only worsened New York State's eviction crisis. With more than 1.2 million households behind on rent, New York communities need long term solutions that will keep them safe and securely housed. We're calling on NY State to pass Statewide Right to Counsel (A07570 / S06678), so ALL tenants across New York State have the right to a lawyer when facing an eviction.

Learn more about our Statewide Right to Counsel campaign

Right to Counsel is proven to stop evictions, but many tenants don't know they have the right to a free lawyer or are scared to exercise their rights. Everyone who is eligible for Right to Counsel has a right to know about it! We're urging the City to allocate $5 million of the NYC budget towards Local Law 53, so tenant organizers across NYC can work to ensure that tenants know about their Right to Counsel and can use it to stop evictions. $5 million would fund more than 40 tenant organizers across the City plus administrative and other associated costs. 

Learn more about our campaign to Fund Local Law 53

RECENT WINS

Earlier this year, two crucial pieces of legislation to expand and strengthen Right to Counsel for NYC tenants were signed into law!

•  Local Law 54, which went into effect on June 1st, accelerated the implementation of Right to Counsel by more than a year.

•  Local Law 53 goes into effect in November 2021 and requires the City to work with trusted tenant organizing groups to engage and educate tenants about their Right to Counsel.

RESOURCES