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07/22/2024 07:26 AM
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/Legis/CSM/showMemoPublic.cfm?chamber=H&SPick=20230&cosponId=41205
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House of Representatives
Session of 2023 - 2024 Regular Session

MEMORANDUM

Posted: July 19, 2023 05:29 PM
From: Representative Rick Krajewski and Rep. Morgan Cephas, Rep. Tarik Khan, Rep. G. Roni Green
To: All House members
Subject: Common Sense Eviction Reform
 
As elected state lawmakers representing Philadelphia, we are shocked and angered by the news that a contractor working for the landlord-tenant officer shot yet another tenant in Philadelphia during an eviction this Tuesday. This is the third discharge of a weapon during an eviction in the past three months in Philadelphia. While we are relieved to hear that the tenant is in stable condition, this situation should never have arisen in the first place and cannot be repeated.
 
This should be a wake-up moment for lawmakers statewide to ensure that evictions do not continue to escalate into violence in the Commonwealth. As such we are calling for these common-sense reforms to be standards throughout Pennsylvania:
 
  1. Clear Advance Notification of Evictions: Tenants must be notified of the date and time of eviction. This will prevent tenants from being unexpectedly locked out and reduce the possibility of escalation into violent confrontation. Similar policies already exist in New York City, Pittsburgh and other cities across the country.
  2. Comprehensive Eviction Proceeding Training: There must be stringent guidelines and procedures for conducting evictions that regulate use of force, firearms, and de-escalation. No one in this state should fear for their livelihood because they fell behind on their rent. 
  3. Public Accountability and Transparency: Municipalities must have a system of public accountability in which the public has access to the names of deputies involved in instances such as this, in which tenants are hurt during evictions.
 
Evictions are a tragedy for our community and a matter of public health. They should be carried out in a way that recognizes the fundamental dignity and humanity of all tenants. These reforms of how evictions occur are the bare minimum to ensure that humanity. We ask that you join us in supporting this urgent legislation.



Introduced as HB287