As Eviction Deadline Looms, Black Women Are Over Two Times More Likely to Be Behind on Rent

Asian women, Black women and Latinas are facing serious hardship with only more to come if expanded unemployment benefits and the eviction moratorium are allowed to expire. It’s time to act before it becomes too difficult for Americans to come back from this crisis.

As Eviction Deadline Looms, Black Women Are Over Two Times More Likely Than White Men to Be Behind on Rent or Mortgage Payments
An anti-eviction demonstration in Brooklyn, New York, in August 2011. (Michael Premo / Flickr)

This fact sheet originally appeared on the National Women’s Law Center (NWLC). It has been republished with permission.

The COVID-19 pandemic has laid bare the disastrous consequences of longstanding racial and gender inequities in our economy. Women continue to bear the brunt of pandemic-related job losses and as of November, nearly two in five unemployed women had been unemployed for six months or more.

The current economic climate, combined with the already high rates of pre-pandemic economic insecurity, and lost earnings due to the gender wage gap have left women with little or no financial cushion to weather the current crisis.

What is more, the looming expiration of emergency extended unemployment benefits under the CARES Act (on Dec. 26) and the CDC’s temporary halt on many evictions (on Dec. 31) threatens economic catastrophe for millions.

NWLC recently released a report analyzing week 18 of the U.S. Census Bureau Household Pulse Survey, which measures the social and economic impact of COVID-19 on households.

The report shows that, compared to white men and women:

  • Asian women, Black women and Latinas are more likely to be behind on their rent or mortgage payment;
  • Black women and Latinas are more likely to be in households that face food insufficiency; and
  • Black women and Latinas are more likely to be in households that have lost employment income since March.
As Eviction Deadline Looms, Black Women Are Over Two Times More Likely Than White Men to Be Behind on Rent or Mortgage Payments
As seen at a Treatment, Not Evictions Rally on May 29, 2018, in Philadelphia. (Joe Piette / Flickr)

Black, non-Hispanic women are over two times more likely than white, non-Hispanic men to be behind on their rent or mortgage payments.

Among renters, more than three in ten Black women reported being behind on their rent payment—making them over two times more likely than white men (13.4 percent) or white women (14.1 percent) to be behind on their rent.

Latinas (18.3 percent) and Asian women (16.1 percent) were also more likely than white men or women to report not being current on rent payments.

Among homeowners with mortgages, Latinas (19.1 percent), Black women (14.5 percent), and Asian women (14.4 percent) were all over two times more likely than white men (6.7 percent) to be behind on their mortgage payment.

As Eviction Deadline Looms, Black Women Are Over Two Times More Likely Than White Men to Be Behind on Rent or Mortgage Payments

Among renters with children in the household, nearly two in five Black women reported being behind on their rent payment. By comparison, among renters with children in the household, about one-quarter of Latinas (25.1 percent) and white, non-Hispanic men (24.7 percent), along with nearly one in four white women (23.8 percent), reported being behind on their rent payment.

Among homeowners with mortgages with children in the household, more than one in five Latinas reported being behind on their mortgage payment. More than one in six Asian, non-Hispanic women (17.7 percent) and Black women (17.0 percent) homeowners in households with children reported being behind on their mortgage—compared to 7.6 percent of white men and 9.7 percent of white women homeowners with children in the household.

As Eviction Deadline Looms, Black Women Are Over Two Times More Likely Than White Men to Be Behind on Rent or Mortgage Payments

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More than one in five Black, non-Hispanic women and Latinas don’t have enough to eat.

Black women (22.6 percent) and Latinas (20.7 percent) were over two times more likely than white men (8.1 percent) and white women (9.4 percent) to report not having enough food in the past week.

As Eviction Deadline Looms, Black Women Are Over Two Times More Likely Than White Men to Be Behind on Rent or Mortgage Payments

About six in ten Black, non-Hispanic women and Latinas are in a household that has lost employment income.

Latinas (60.4 percent) and Black women (58.1 percent) were more likely than white men (42.7 percent) and white women (41.9 percent) to report a loss of work income in their household since March. These losses may be exacerbated in the coming weeks and months if businesses face tightened restrictions in response to the pandemic or shut down altogether.

More than one in four people overall expect their household to lose employment income in the next four weeks as a result of the pandemic.

Nearly two in five Latinas, nearly three in ten Black women, and more than one in four Asian women expect their households to lose employment income in the next month—compared to 21.5 percent of white men and 21.2 percent of white women.

As Eviction Deadline Looms, Black Women Are Over Two Times More Likely Than White Men to Be Behind on Rent or Mortgage Payments

COVID-19 has wreaked havoc on the economy; millions of jobs are likely permanently lost while some that have returned in recent months may again disappear as the pandemic resurges.

Asian women, Black women and Latinas are facing serious hardship with only more to come if expanded unemployment benefits and the eviction moratorium are allowed to expire. It’s time to act before it becomes too difficult for Americans to come back from this crisis.

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About and

Jasmine Tucker is Director of Research at the National Women’s Law Center, where her work focuses on a range of issues facing women and their families. Before joining the Center, Tucker served as Senior Research Analyst at the National Priorities Project where her work centered on federal spending, tax policy, and social insurance and safety net programs.
Claire Ewing-Nelson is a Research Fellow of Workplace Justice at the National Women's Law Center.