OneoutcomeofthiscollaborationisanAlleghenyCounty Department of Human Services analysis of court-centered eviction actions that shows that 75 percent of cases are filed in the private rental housing market. However, the Housing Authorities of the City of Pittsburgh and Allegheny County file more cases than any other property owner. Theevictionsconnectedtothesegovernmentagenciesare especiallyimportantintheFoundation’santi-homelessness effort because they deal with the region’s poorest tenants. TaskforceresearchersMichaelYonas,theFoundation’s senior program officer for Research and Special Initiatives, andRachelRueoftheCountyDepartmentofHumanServices, separatedpublichousingrentsfromallinvolvedauthorities into hundred-dollar increments. They found that tenants paying less than $100 per month — meaning that they were amongthemostheavilysubsidizedaccordingtoincome — were most likely to end up in court. Most eviction-related cases are filed to force tenants to pay back rent, andofthose,themajorityaresettled,andthetenantsremainintheirhomes. Of the 1,227 cases filed by City Housing Authority officials in 2016, only 142 ended in actual evictions, according to Authority records. There is still a heavy toll for the other 1,085: Eviction filings are recorded on a tenant’s rental history, which landlords can use to deny future rental applications. Downing sees the collaborative effort as essential to reducing filings and evictions. Just as important is understanding the situations of the people represented in the numbers. People like Celeste Scott. Now an affordable housing organizer with Pittsburgh United, Scott has faced years of housing instability. When she left Pittsburgh for college in Maryland in 1993, the public housing complex where she had lived was permanently closed, displacing her mother, who then moved to Maryland to live with her daughter. Then her mother, who had been paying part of the rent, died. Scott was working two jobs while going to school, but with funeral expenses andotherfinancialobligations,sheandher3-year-oldsonendedupbeing evicted for past-due rent. ShereturnedtoPittsburghandcontinuedtowork,butsheandherson weredisplacedthreemoretimes—twicebyeviction,andoncebecausethe rentforherLawrencevilleapartmentnearlydoubled.Shewenttocourtonce to fight a filing, but she lost, as defendants in eviction cases do 85 percent ofthetime,accordingtoRueoftheCountyDepartmentofHumanServices. Scott says that even though she was attaining decent wages, “being a black woman raising a child and facing rising housing costs meant I still neededassistance.Butyouhavetobecomehomelesstogetitbecausethere is no coordination of services otherwise.” Scott is not alone: Black women are evicted so much more frequently than other groups that in 2014 the MacArthur Foundation published a study called “Poor Black Women Are Evicted at Alarming Rates, Setting Off a Chain of Hardship.” “The fear of eviction is so great,” Scott says. “You want to fight it, but the power of landlords is so great that people just leave.” Community Human Services, one of the region’s leading housing stabilization, mental health and food assistance providers, helped Scott The fear of eviction is so great. You want to fight it, but the power of landlords is so great that people just leave. CELESTE SCOTT Pittsburgh United 44 EVICTIONS NOTICED