Legislature passes Boston housing bills

Part of activists’ push for fairer housing, the HOMES Act, along with updates to Boston’s zoning code and new tenant protections, were all sent to the governor’s desk last week. The bills move affordable housing forward and signal the state’s urgency around protecting tenants during the pandemic.

The HOMES Act, written by Boston City Councilor Lydia Edwards, gives tenants the right to go to court to have their eviction record sealed. Edwards’ original intent was to have all eviction records sealed after a few years, to protect tenants from being unfairly denied housing due to a past circumstance.

“If you have an eviction on your record, your chance of getting housing is extremely low. Then, the ripple effects of that lack of housing means lack of job opportunities,” Edwards told the Banner. “It’s a scarlet letter ‘E.’ They deserve a second chance.”

Those who have no-fault evictions and non-payment

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