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Project Now Eviction Diversion Program

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When the state moratorium on evictions ends in Illinois later this month, Project Now will be ready. With several partners, it's organized an eviction diversion program - only the second in the state.

Executive Director Dwight Ford says in Illinois, evictions are handled at the county level, and the diversion program includes the 14th Judicial Circuit, Prairie States Legal Services, the Rock Island County Bar Association, and volunteer lawyers from John Deere.

When someone receives an eviction notice, they'll be offered mediation.

"Hopefully this will allow a resolution without trial before a judge, this will hopefully allow two individuals to be made whole through a partnership. So this program is not simply pro-tenant and is not simply pro-property owner - it's pro both parties."

Ford says he won't know how many possible evictions there'll be until after the Illinois eviction moratorium ends, currently set for August 21st. Project Now and the Salvation Army both have money available to help tenants catch up on their rent, and for property owners to catch up on their bills.

He calls housing "the anchor of all opportunity" because of its impact on the community, the economy, and children.