LOS ANGELES:- Businessman, housing specialist and former Metro Board Member Mel Wilson urged Los Angeles city leaders to require recipients of COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) funds, both landlords and tenants, to be vaccinated. Wilson is a candidate for mayor of Los Angeles.
“These one-time rental assistance payments are related to the pandemic. They won’t last forever. We all have to do our part to beat COVID-19 and get back to normal,” said Wilson. “We must require recipients of COVID rental assistance to be vaccinated or provide a medical reason to opt out. If L.A. can require its city employees to be vaccinated, we can do it for rental assistance recipients. The unvaccinated are getting infected, spreading the Delta variant and setting back our economic recovery. If you take government money, you take its medicine.”
Wilson has previously labeled the failure of the City’s elected leaders to disburse rental assistance funding as “unacceptable.” Data from the City’s dashboard on ERAP Report Dashboard for ERAP – HCIDLA (lacity.org) reveals that only 15%, or $35 million, of the $236 million available for rental assistance is in process to be disbursed.
“Rental assistance recipients need our help and we need their cooperation. The bulk of the money is owed to mom and pop housing providers who can’t afford to subsidize the pandemic.” Wilson continued, “We have a homeless crisis that could be made worse by bureaucratic red tape. Keeping families in their homes provides a lifeline and helps stop the spread of the virus.”
Wilson also called on Mayor Garcetti and the City Council to expand vaccination requirements beyond city employees to city contractors or require twice a week COVID-19 testing for city employees and contractors. Wilson agrees with the City Council’s support for proof of vaccination in indoor public settings.
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