PCADV and our supporters strongly encourage PA legislators to swiftly pass HB 1441, which would amend the Landlord and Tenant Act of 1951 to allow tenants to be released from a lease when the tenant is a victim of sexual or domestic violence.
Domestic violence is a leading cause of homelessness for women and children in the Commonwealth. Far too often, victims are faced with only two choices: (1) leave a dangerous home and lose financial and housing stability as a result or (2) remain in a home that jeopardizes their safety and increases their risk of losing their life to domestic violence.
HB 1441 will provide victims the ability to leave an unsafe, unlivable environment without dire economic consequences, which is key to domestic violence intervention and homicide prevention. In fact, this is one of the top requests PCADV receives from victims on our civil legal helpline — seeking support to break a lease due to life-threatening safety concerns — to which Pennsylvania law currently offers no redress.
HB 1441 will further victims’ chances of securing housing stability and economic self-sufficiency and as a result, it will save lives. Absent this protection, victims will remain at risk and Pennsylvania will remain out of step with victim protections already codified under federal law in the Violence Against Women Act.
Join us in urging PA legislators to support survivors by supporting HB 1441.