PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — There’s a call to action in Peoria’s East Bluff, it comes as dozens said they’re on the verge of being evicted without a reason why and only a month’s notice.
Peoria East Bluff resident Raychell Washington is a mother of four. She’s one of the dozens of renters who recently received an eviction notice from Texas-based property manager Darwin Homes, telling her she has to be out of her house by the new year.
“I just need a little bit more time to move, 5 days after Christmas, four kids, I don’t have the funds right now and rent’s skyrocketed,” Washington said.
During Tuesday’s Peoria City Council meeting, Washington alongside other residents and advocates urged city leaders to help those facing sudden eviction.
“Give us 30 days, give us 60 days, give us 90 days for God’s sake and help these people who are being evicted through no fault of their own,” said Lawrence Maushard, East Bluff resident.
3rd District Councilman Tim Riggenbach said while it may not be illegal for Darwin Homes to issue the notices to month-to-month renters, it doesn’t make the situation alright.
“Just because it’s within their rights doesn’t mean it’s the right thing to do. That’s the part that really gives so many of us heartburn about it,” Riggenbach said.
He said city leaders have begun exploring ways to ease the burden on those that are impacted.
“Our Community Development Director Joe Dulin has reached out to the property owner already and just asked for an extension,” Riggenbach said. “That’s a lot of extra stress to throw at people at this time of year.”
Riggenbach added that city leaders have had preliminary discussions about holding a meeting with stakeholders, so tenants know what their rights are.
Darwin Homes has not responded to our repeated requests for comment.