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On Tuesday afternoon, California Governor Gavin Newsom issued executive orders meant to offer relief to renters and homeowners as the COVID-19 crisis threatens to upend the lives of workers and families already suffering from precarious economic circumstances. The order gives local governments the ability to “halt evictions for renters and homeowners, slow foreclosures, and protect against utility shutoffs for Californians affected by COVID-19,” according to a press release from the governor’s office.
The order comes as the viral spread escalates throughout California. Experts urge people to stay in their homes and avoid all but the most necessary trips to purchase goods. Governments around the world, and within the United States, are scrambling to find ways to help fill the gaps in the incomes of workers and businesses as spending plummets and public health protocols, such as the closing of bars and restaurants, throw the lives and incomes of workers into disarray.
“Over the next few weeks, everyone will have to make sacrifices — but a place to live shouldn’t be one of them. I strongly encourage cities and counties take up this authority to protect Californians,” said Governor Newsom in the statement. The protections are currently in place until May 31, 2020.