As a sort of holiday gift to struggling families, sheriff's departments throughout the Chicago area are halting evictions — at least through the first of the year.
The latest to join the movement has been Lake County Sheriff Mark Curran, who has ordered his civil process unit to suspend evictions until Jan 4.
"In law enforcement, we must weigh our duty along with compassion," Curran said in a release.
The moratorium temporarily halts 55 evictions that had been scheduled through the first few days of the new year.
Curran joins the sheriffs in Cook, Kane, Will and McHenry counties, who are postponing evictions for foreclosures or nonpayment of rent.
In Cook County, where deputies handle some 200 to 250 evictions a week, a court-ordered moratorium kicked in Monday and will last until Jan. 4. It's also in effect whenever the temperature dips below 15 degrees.
Mortgage finance companies Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are also suspending foreclosures and evictions until Jan. 3, 2010.