About Essential and Exposed

These stories were produced by the Howard Center for Investigative Journalism, part of the Philip Merrill College of Journalism at the University of Maryland, in collaboration with journalists from Boston University, the University of Arkansas and Stanford University. The mission…

Settlement in Idaho case strengthens homeless protections

Homeless people in Boise with nowhere else to sleep can no longer be arrested for doing so in public, under the terms of the settlement announced by the city and plaintiffs.

Public housing, the last refuge for the poor, threatens to kick out tenants for small debts

Public housing is supposed to be a solution to homelessness, not a cause of it. The Howard Center for Investigative Journalism analyzed four years of eviction data to find out why five public-housing authorities are taking so many of their clients to court.

Milwaukee evictions spurred by COVID-19, longstanding racism and poverty

States across the country temporarily barred landlords from evicting tenants this year as the coronavirus reached the United States, forcing businesses to shutter and unemployment to spike. Wisconsin was one of the first states to lift its eviction moratorium on May 26.

A federal law tried to block evictions and prevent homelessness. Cracks appeared immediately.

A two-month investigation by the Howard Center for Investigative Journalism found that while the federal and state moratoriums dramatically decreased eviction filings in April and May, cracks in the federal law appeared immediately.

Unable to evict, Massachusetts landlords avoid riskier tenants

The Massachusetts eviction moratorium is creating a deeper affordable housing crisis in the state, as landlords once willing to take on financially riskier tenants, like those with poor credit, balk at the prospect.

Tulsa landlords were offered rent if they didn’t evict. Few took the deal.

A program in Tulsa, Oklahoma, designed to stem evictions amid the pandemic fell flat when lawyers advised landlords the deal offering to pay back rent was too risky.

Confusion over federal eviction moratorium led to selective enforcement

A two-month investigation by the Howard Center for Investigative Journalism found that while the federal and state moratoriums dramatically decreased eviction filings in April and May, cracks in the federal law appeared immediately.

Massachusetts’ strong tenant protections weren’t enough to stop evictions

A two-month investigation of the federal and Massachusetts moratoriums found holes in safeguards against evictions for Massachusetts tenants emerged soon after the laws took effect.