HOUSTON – A Harris County man whose eviction story went viral this week after a CNN report showed him being removed from his home with his young children, thanked people from around the world who donated to help him and his family.
In an emotional press conference Friday, held with Harris County Precinct 1 Constable Al Rosen, 24-year-old Israel Rodriguez said the donated money would help him get his life back together.
In between tears, Rodriguez said he was grateful for the money that was donated to help him and his family, including his two young children, ages 2 and 4.
“Just wanted to thank everybody that reached out to me,” he said. “Everybody that helped me out all over the world.”
Rodriguez said he’s now staying at a hotel. He wants to show his appreciation to people who reached out to help.
“I never expected this but this shows me how people are,” Rodriguez said. “It’s the best thing that could ever happen to me.”
After the CNN report went viral, the Precinct 1 Foundation set up a GoFundMe page to help Rodriguez and the hundreds of others that were facing evictions in the middle of the pandemic. The donations will especially be used to help the elderly and families with small children. Rosen said the money would help with rent.
“We have heard from people all over the nation wanting to help the displaced people. That just goes to show you the will, it shows you the care that our country feels for one another,” Rosen said Thursday night.
The public response even touched Rosen, whose office handled the eviction.
“The outpouring of love and support that came to this family and others from across the nation is what moves me and inspires me,” he said.
The constable said Israel now has several job opportunities. The constable’s office is working with the family to find permanent housing.
The constable said his office is also holding off on evictions for now following the recent CDC moratorium. The CNN story was completed prior to the moratorium being announced, according to the GoFundMe page.
Watch the emotional press conference below:
WATCH LIVE: Office of Constable Alan Rosen, Harris County Constable Precinct 1 and Israel Rodriguez, the man whose eviction story went viral this week, hold press conference. MORE: https://www.click2houston.com/news/local/2020/09/04/harris-county-constables-start-gofundme-for-evictions-after-viral-story-spotlighted-displaced-residents/Posted by KPRC2 / Click2Houston on Friday, September 4, 2020