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California Strives to Keep Families and Their Animals Together in Low-Income Housing Units - National Humane Education Society

October 17, 2022

Paws Up!

Governor Newsom signed legislation to help keep animals with their families by restricting low-income housing units built in 2023 from charging a monthly pet fee.

The companionship of an animal is priceless. People who share their lives with one or more animals will wholeheartedly agree that they receive more from their animals than they could ever give. Even some people who were reserved at first about taking in a homeless cat or dog could not imagine life now without their furry friend. Many share endearing stories of how their animals have changed their lives for the better.

Companion animals have the unique ability to bring comfort and alleviate stress in their humans’ daily lives. Especially during difficult times, when their humans face the loss of a loved one, a job, or a home, animals can bring moments of happiness amidst uncertainty. By doing this, animals help increase the overall health of their families.

Sadly, many shelters are filled with animals that were once loved but had to be surrendered due to their owners experiencing an illness, financial hardship, or housing restrictions. Potential tenants are put in challenging situations when rental properties impose one or more of the following constraints:

  • Limiting the type and number of animals allowed.
  • Only allowing dogs under a specific weight limit.
  • Requiring a large deposit plus a monthly fee for each animal.

Additional monthly fees can be difficult for individuals and families who qualify for low-income housing. Some families choose to be homeless rather than give up their animals in order to have a roof over their heads.

According to a press release last month, California passed Senate Bill 971 to prevent families from having to make the heartbreaking decision to give up their animals to have a home. This new law —first introduced in the summer by Senator Josh Newman—requires rental properties built in 2023 to waive the pet fee for low-income housing tenants. 

Take Action: Californians, show your support for Governor Newsom’s choice to keep families and their animals together by sending him an email today! Click here to send the governor an email.

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2 responses to “California Strives to Keep Families and Their Animals Together in Low-Income Housing Units”

  1. I am a disabled Vietnam vet, who I lost my best animal friend on Oct 3, 2022. Leo was a sweet, gray/white tuxedo male tabby, who used to race around the house while roaring, & stop at the back door in order for me me to let him out. Among his bag of tricks was hugging my foot while I was sitting at the kitchen table.

  2. Jeanne says:

    Paws up for gov business. Animals need to be protected by having a roof over their heads. No matter what breed or size. THANK YOU!!! Tell other governors to do the same.

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