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Curbing Evictions In Chattanooga And Hamilton County: A Necessity

Housing justice protest scene.

Curbing Evictions In Chattanooga And Hamilton County: A Necessity

In an urgent bid to tackle the looming issue of evictions, the city of Chattanooga and Hamilton County are taking a novel approach. For the past four years, an initiative has been in place here to help residents facing eviction with necessary legal and social support.

The Eviction Prevention Initiative

The Eviction Prevention Initiative has been a beacon of hope for households at the brink of eviction in these regions. Its aim is twofold: ensure tenants remain in their homes while also compensating landlords fairly. The brainchild of the Community Foundation of Greater Chattanooga, the program is currently funded by the City of Chattanooga along with several private donors. Legal Aid of East Tennessee has been managing it since last year.

Steered by a team of skilled attorneys and social workers, the program provides crucial support to households during and after court proceedings.

Implications of the Initiative: An Economical Perspective

A recent study conducted on behalf of the Community Foundation revealed that an average annual investment of 640,000 dollars towards providing counsel in eviction cases could provide a potential yearly benefit to taxpayers that exceeds three million dollars.

Keely Gilliland, chief of staff at the Community Foundation of Greater Chattanooga states, “The Initiative’s primary goal is to ensure tenants facing eviction obtain adequate legal representation. While this cost is substantial, the savings in terms of avoided evictions and subsequent social costs are immense.”

A Glimmer of Hope for Landlords and Tenants Alike

Benjamin Danford, the managing attorney of the Eviction Prevention Initiative and a staff attorney at Legal Aid of East Tennessee, lauds the program for striking balance. As he puts it, “This initiative is a unique model that works in favor of both tenants and landlords. This is pivotal in creating a sustainable housing system.”

Danford further adds that the initiative plays an integral role in alleviating homelessness by helping tenants preserve their housing and ensuring landlords receive their due. This, in turn, enhances community stability and gives roots to better neighborhood integrity.


In conclusion, ensuring access to legal representation for tenants faced with eviction is not only a move towards social justice but also an effective economic strategy. The benefits are manifold, ranging from reducing homelessness to promoting harmonious landlord and tenant relationships. The measures taken by Chattanooga and Hamilton County are indeed an important step towards a sustainable housing system.

For more details about the Eviction Prevention Initiative, you can visit their official site here.

[Author: HERE News]

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