Faith Leaders' Letter on Housing to Gov. Sununu
To the Honorable Governor Chris Sununu,
We, the [#] undersigned New Hampshire faith leaders, write to you about the issue of housing, which weighs heavily on our hearts at this time of freezing temperatures, long nights, spreading sickness, and widespread unemployment. Although we are followers of several faith traditions, the values we share unite us to ask you to use your power as governor to show compassion and honor the humanity of all our neighbors. Keeping our neighbors housed ought to be a top priority of your administration.
In Leviticus 25, when Moses was on Mount Sinai, God established regular Jubilee Years, a year of Sabbath for the land, when all servants are freed and debts forgiven. When buying land from a neighbor, the people of God are told not to take advantage of each other. Leviticus is also the origin of the familiar commandment, “love your neighbor as yourself.” In the Christian tradition, Jesus’s ministry emphasizes compassion and mutual support. In fact, these values are fundamental in all of our faith traditions, affirming that that no person should be evicted in such a time. We implore you to let these values guide your policymaking.
We appreciate the allocation of $35 million to the New Hampshire Housing Relief Program, yet less than half has been spent while the need for assistance remains great. People have come to us who have been unaware of the program, whose applications are still being processed months after submission, who have been denied, and who have received a grant but are still in need. In the spirit of Jubilee, we ask you to better publicize the program, add funding, remove grant limits, and loosen requirements for approval.
We further ask you to restore and strengthen your statewide eviction moratorium. Provide New Hampshire residents security beyond the CDC’s eviction moratorium by creating a grace period for repayment, prohibiting late fees and interest, and deferring filing of eviction proceedings.
Our various traditions guide us to make this request, that you use your authority to provide security to our neighbors and prevent any New Hampshire residents from being forced onto the streets as a result of the pandemic and recession.
[New Hampshire Faith Leaders]
AFTER SIGNING, PLEASE INVITE OTHER FAITH LEADERS TO SIGN THE LETTER
You may use this text:
Some of our colleagues have written a letter to Governor Sununu on the topic of housing, encouraging him to strengthen policies that will help our neighbors remain housed during the pandemic and recession. I just signed it. Would you mind signing it as well and forwarding this to a few other people? Here is the link:
Name (with title)
Faith Community Town
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