The coronavirus pandemic is having a negative impact on Dallas residents both on where they live and how they are treating others.
Here's what you need to know about evictions and mental health:
Evictions officially OK
As of May 18, landlords can now begin proceedings to evict their tenants.
The Texas Supreme Court — the same Abbott-appointed crew who released defiant Dallas salon owner Shelley Luther from jail — suspended a statewide moratorium on evictions, which had been in effect since March.
During the moratorium, landlords could still submit filings, and those have piled up: According to CBS, DFW landlords have filed more than a thousand eviction petitions since March. Landlords and housing advocates are predicting an avalanche of eviction cases to be filed as a result of the pandemic.
As usual, it's Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins to the rescue. "Although Texas is allowing eviction cases to proceed tomorrow, the Dallas County JPs have agreed with me today to provide residents here additional time," Jenkins says.
Eviction cases filed after March 10, the date of the first Covid19 case, will not be set for a hearing date before June 15 in Dallas County.
According to a release from the Dallas Police Department, they're seeing an increase in domestic violence. The stats are as follows:
- February: 918 cases reported
- March: 1,169 cases reported
- April: 1,202 cases reported
Lieutenant Pollyanna Ashford says that the abuse can be from myriad reasons, be it the shelter-in-place and/or unemployment, all as a result of the coronavirus.
The DPD suggests having a packed bag ready to go, and calling 911. They also offer a list of shelters including Brighter Tomorrows 972-262-8383, Genesis 214-942-2998, Mosaic 214-823-4434, New Beginnings 972-276-0057, Salvation Army 214-424-7208, and The Family Place 214-941-1991.
Dallas County introduced a color-coded chart to help clarify safe activities during the pandemic.
The chart has four color zones — red, orange, yellow, and green — with each color indicating level of risk on activities such as dining out and attending concerts. Red is the highest risk, obviously.