Coronavirus News: Mayor calls for rent freeze for NYC residents amid COVID-19 closures

NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- Mayor Bill de Blasio on Friday called for a rent freeze in New York City in an effort to help residents impacted by COVID-19 closures.

Landlords are speaking out against the rent freeze on the city's nearly one million regulated apartments. The mayor made the decision because so many people are now having financial difficulties.

De Blasio has told the Rent Guidelines Board to meet remotely and approve a freeze in the coming weeks.

The group representing the landlords of those apartments responded in a statement.

"Enacting another rent freeze will only expedite the deterioration of the City's aging housing stock, and will do nothing to aid tenants that are already struggling to pay the rent in the midst of this crisis."

De Blasio also said he will work with state regulators to make it possible for NYC residents to be able to pay their rent with security deposits.

"I am calling upon the Rent Guidelines Board today to issue a rent freeze to ensure that New Yorkers that are going through the greatest economic crisis since the Great Depression and are covered by the jurisdiction of the Rent Guidelines Board - that's over two million of us - that all those good New Yorkers who are struggling right now get a rent freeze," de Blasio said. "Because, Lord knows, people do not need another burden at this moment."

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