ASSIGNMENT: Help a family who was swindled by their landlord and is suddenly homeless
REFERRING OFFICER: Columbus Division of Police Ofc Robin Medley, 11 Pct Community Liaison Officer
FACILITATOR: Suzanne Maginn
REQUESTED HELP: Monetary donations to cover hotel expenses while the family finds a new place to stay
Ofc Medley contacted us this afternoon to report that a family in his area had suddenly found themselves evicted by Code Enforcement from a home that, just a few weeks before, they thought they'd been renting to own. Their nightmare started when their landlord told them he was selling the home they've been living in. They protested, saying that they'd had an agreement with him to rent to own, which he denied. The parents, Antoine* and Santea,* went to Legal Aid and the Columbus Urban League for help, but because they didn't have proper legal documents, neither organization was able to help them.
In the meantime, the property was inspected and Code Enforcement became involved due to shoddy repairs made by the landlord. Unfortunately, those repairs are so bad that Code Enforcement had no choice but to immediately evict Antoine and Santea and their two children (ages 11 and 4). The house is a fire hazard and will be boarded up and placarded today. The family is currently gathering up as many belongings as they can get out before that happens.
Starfish is asking for donations to get the family into a hotel through Monday. If we raise more than that amount, we will donate that directly to the family. Ofc Medley vouches for the family, saying they're hardworking people who have simply hit hard times and need some help getting through this event, which as you can imagine, is very shocking and upsetting to them.
*Names have been changed to protect their privacy.
UPDATE 6/28/19: Thanks to your generosity, we've been able raise enough money to keep the family in a hotel until Monday, with an extra $66 that we are making arrangements to give to them on Sunday or Monday (depending on their availability as well as officer availability). Any additional donations we receive before then will be passed on to them. Thank you, as always, for your caring hearts!