Rigged System: Report Finds Baltimore is a National Leader in Evictions, as 7,000 Households, Overwhelmingly Black, Are Thrown out on the Street Each Year

A report by the Public Justice Center, a civil legal aid organization, sounds the alarm on the problem of evictions, which are experienced primarily by Black residents, namely Black women.

News Story (Maryland)

David Love
Atlanta Black Star
December 13, 2015

Tags: Housing: Eviction, Rent Court, Research/Data

Organizations mentioned/involved: Public Justice Center (PJC)


The new report—Justice Diverted: How Renters Are Processed in the Baltimore City Rent Court—has made some disturbing findings concerning the practice in the city, where 7,000 families are evicted each year. Baltimore ranks second in the country, second only to Detroit, in the percentage of people who face the threat of eviction. Further, 60 percent of renters had valid legal reasons to challenge their eviction, the study found, but lost their home because they lacked the resources to hire a lawyer, and they did not understand their rights.

“Our study shows that the court system prioritizes efficiencies which privilege the landlord’s bottom line, and as a result, it decidedly ignores two predominating realities of poor renters and their housing,” the study says. Of the 278,809 filings in Baltimore City rent court, more than half are landlord-tenant cases, nearly all of which are brought by landlords.