COLUMBUS (WCMH)–The coronavirus pandemic has taken a toll on Ohioans physically, mentally, and financially.

“We’re seeing people lose their jobs, and some of those jobs aren’t coming back,” said Joy Bivens, deputy county administrator of Health and Human Services for Franklin County.

Franklin County Department of Job and Family Services has seen a sharp rise in the number of people without a steady source of income, behind on their rent payments, and in danger of being evicted from their homes.

“We have case managers that are actually in the eviction court to assist residents as they matriculate through that process,” Bivens said. “Those numbers have increased extremely high since, over the last year.”

The department, which sits under the Franklin County Board of Commissioners, has money available to help those who need it, through its Prevention, Retention, and Contingency (PRC) Emergency Rental Assistance Program.

“Those are dollars to prevent people from being evicted and it goes directly to the landlord of the home,” Bivens said. “We can pay for the first three months, or we can pay them back three months for an individual who is facing eviction.”

Bivens said partnerships with Community Mediation Services, Legal Aid Society, and IMPACT Community Action provides help to as many people as possible, so no one is turned away or left without an option.

“We are not going to do that,” Bivens said. “We are going to try to make sure we get you connected to the right partner for the right situation, so they can get resolution for their crisis. We’re going to be as committed as possible and go above and beyond to ensure that every resident in this county that is eligible for these resources, that we can get the word out and they can obtain them, and we get them to them in a timely manner.”

PRC Eligibility requirements

  • You must be a resident of Franklin County.
  • Families must have at least one minor child or pregnant person in their third trimester.
  • You must meet federal requirements as relates to income.

You can see the full list of requirements and additional details about the PRC program by CLICKING HERE.