When facing eviction, tenants have a number of resources aimed to help them legally and financially. These resources, made available through the Ithaca Eviction/Displacement Defense (IEDD) Project, will tell you about your rights as a tenant, provide free legal assistance, if needed, and help you determine if you qualify for rent relief assistance–for up to 18 months.
Below are the most common resources. For more information or further resources such as employment assistance, healthcare, childcare, and financial assistance, tenants can dial 2.1.1 (1.877.211.8667), email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit 211Tompkins.org.
211Tompkins Cortland is a program of the Human Services Coalition.
Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) can provide significant economic relief to assist households that are unable to pay rent and utilities due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Apply online, or for help completing the application, call 1.844.NY1.RENT (1.844.691.7368). For local assistance in Tompkins and Cortland counties dial 2.1.1 (1.877.211.8667).
Tompkins County’s Homelessness Emergency Hotline: This DSS hotline (607.277.5500) provides assistance to persons experiencing homelessness and a range of other emergency situations. Callers can be connected to local resources for housing, food and furniture. There is also a 24-Hour Homeless Emergency Hotline: 607.354.8990.
Tompkins Co.’s Home Energy Assistance DSS’s Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) helps Tompkins County residents meet the high costs of home energy and offers emergency assistance. Call 607.274.5264.
Residential (non-commercial) tenants can get free legal advice through the Tenants Legal Hotline. Callers will be connected with a Cornell law student who works closely with a licensed attorney to provide brief advice. Call 607.301.1560 or email email@example.com.
The Legal Assistance of Western New York, Inc. is a non-profit law firm that provides free legal aid to people with civil legal problems in Western New York. Their expansive resources cover services in health, housing, employment, family, income, and more. Call 607.273.3667.
Other Housing Assistance
The Ithaca Tenants Union is a community organization of Ithaca tenants with a focus on tenant solidarity and community organizing. With a building database of landlord reports and reviews, they provide helpful information to Ithaca renters and stand by their side through any issue they may face. Email them at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 607.358.5048.
Tompkins Community Action Program Rental Assistance Housing Voucher provides rental subsidies to income-eligible individuals and households through the Ithaca Housing Authority and Tompkins Community Action. Call 607-273-8816.
The Ithaca Eviction/Displacement Defense Project coordinates a comprehensive partnership with local experts who know the challenges of housing displacement for renters in the City of Ithaca.