Mayor’s Office Announces Launch of Ad Campaign to Promote Tenants Rights

One of the new advertisements that are a part of a campaign by the Mayor’s office to inform tenants of their rights. Image Credit: Mayor’s Office to Protect Tenants

de Blasio Administration educates tenants on Housing Stability and Tenant Protection Act. On October 21, 2019, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced the launch of a campaign to educate tenants on their new rights under the Housing Stability and Tenant Protection Act of 2019.  The Mayor’s Office designed the advertisements to protect tenants and give New York City renters the information they need to hold their landlords accountable.

This past June, the New York State Legislature passed the Housing Stability and Tenant Protection Act of 2019, which strengthened protections for tenants and made it more difficult for landlords to evict. The laws address a variety of common issues for tenants, including large security deposits and application fees, limits on rent increases and how much landlords can charge regulated tenants for building improvements.

To increase awareness of these new protections, the Mayor’s Office to Protect Tenants have created five advertisements that show scenarios where tenant’s rights are being challenged. In each advertisement, a landlord or broker makes a statement that violates a tenant’s rights, and the advertisement instructs the reader on how to respond.

The first advertisement addresses limits on security deposits. Under the new law, security deposits are limited to only one month’s rent, so it is illegal for a landlord to request more than that.

The second advertisement addresses eviction. A judge may only evict tenants, not landlords, and tenants may also have the right to an attorney. If a landlord attempts to evict a tenant without a warrant of eviction or other court order, the landlord could face a misdemeanor punishable with fines of $1,000 to $10,000.

The third advertisement addresses application fees. Under the new law, application fees for an apartment are now limited to fees for background checks and credit checks and now cannot exceed $20.

The fourth advertisement addresses rent increases. The advertisement advises that there may be new applicable limits on rent increases and to get a rent history.

The fifth advertisement addresses tenant harassment. Tenant harassment is when a landlord forces or puts pressure on a tenant to move out. In the advertisement, the landlord states “the neighborhood is changing. I want you out.”

All five advertisements state that tenants can learn more about their rights at the Mayor’s Office to Protect Tenants’ website.

The advertisements will be displayed in subways, bus shelters, small businesses, Staten Island ferry terminals, community newspapers, Link kiosks, and online and will run from October 21 through December 15. To see the advertisements, click here.

The ads will feature in subway stations and other sources of public transportation. Image Credit: CityLand

The city’s Public Engagement Unit will also be going door to door to make sure tenants know about the new protections, how to advocate for themselves, and ways to seek legal assistance.

Assembly Member Joseph R. Lentol stated, “New Yorkers deserve to live in their homes without fear of being harassed or forced out. The new tenant protection laws will make sure that individuals and families can afford to stay in their homes and are safe-guarded from harassment by bad actors,”

Mayor Bill de Blasio stated, “The State Legislature passed some of the most progressive rent reforms we’ve seen in decades, but if New Yorkers don’t know their rights, it will all be for nothing. This campaign will arm New Yorkers with the knowledge to fight harassment and stay in their homes.”

Deputy Mayor for Housing and Economic Development Vicki Been stated, “The State Housing Stability and Tenant Protection Act of 2019 was a historic triumph for New York renters and a once in a generation overhaul of rent regulation laws. We’re committed to building on our partner’s work; this reform is just the beginning of our tenant engagement and protection efforts.”

By: Abby Cannon and Veronica Rose

One thought on “Mayor’s Office Announces Launch of Ad Campaign to Promote Tenants Rights

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.