Benfer, Emily A.

GW Law Faculty Publications

July 1, 2023



“A Little Bit of a Security Blanket”: Renter Experiences with COVID-19–Era Eviction Moratoriums, 97 Soc. Serv. Rev. 423 (with Danya E. Keene, Whitney Denary, Annie Harper, Anna Kapolka & Peter Hepburn) (2023).

Protecting the Most Vulnerable: Policy Response and Eviction Filing Patterns During the COVID-19 Pandemic, RSF: Russell Sage Found. J. Soc. Scis., May 2023, at 186 (with Peter Hepburn, Jacob Haas, Nick Graetz, Renee Louis, Devin Q. Rutan, Anne Kat Alexander, Jasmine Rangel, Olivia Jin, & Matthew Desmond).

COVID-19 Housing Policy: State and Federal Eviction Moratoria and Supportive Measures in the United States During the Pandemic, Hous. Pol’y Debate (2022) (with Robert Koehler, Alyx Mark, Valerie Nazzaro, Anne Kat Alexander, Peter Hepburn, Danya E. Keene & Matthew Desmond).

Variation in State-Level Eviction Moratorium Protections and Mental Health Among US Adults During the COVID-19 Pandemic, 4 JAMA Network Open e2139585 (2021) (with Kathryn M. Leifheit, Craig E. Pollack, Julia Raifman, Gabriel L. Schwartz, Robert D. Koehler, Jackie V. Rodriguez Bronico, Frederick J. Zimmerman & Sabriya L. Linton).

Eviction, Health Inequity, and the Spread of COVID-19: Housing Policy as a Primary Pandemic Mitigation Strategy, 98 J. Urb. Health 1 (2021) (with David Vlahov, Marissa Y. Long, Evan Walker-Wells, J.L. Pottenger, Jr., Gregg Gonsalves & Danya E. Keene).

Setting the Health Justice Agenda: Addressing Health Inequity & Injustice in the Post-Pandemic Clinic, 28 Clinical L. Rev. 45 (2021) (with James Bhandary-Alexander, Yael Cannon, Medha D. Makhlouf & Tomar Pierson-Brown).

Expiring Eviction Moratoriums and COVID-19 Incidence and Mortality, 190 Am. J. Epidemiology 2503 (2021) (with Kathryn M. Leifheit, Sabriya L. Linton, Julia Raifman, Gabriel L. Schwartz, Frederick J. Zimmerman & Craig Evan Pollack).

 U.S. Eviction Filing Patterns in 2020, 7 Socius 1 (2021) (with Peter Hepburn, Renee Louis, Joe Fish, Emily Lemmerman, Anne Kat Alexander, Timothy A. Thomas, Robert Koehler & Matthew Desmond).

Health Justice Strategies to Combat the Pandemic: Eliminating Discrimination, Poverty, and Health Disparities During and After COVID-19, 19 Yale J. Health Pol’y L. & Ethics, no. 3, 2020, at 122 (with Seema Mohapatra, Lindsay F. Wiley & Ruqaiijah Yearby).

Health Justice Strategies to Eradicate Lead Poisoning: An Urgent Call to Action to Safeguard Future Generations, 19 Yale J. Health Pol’y L. & Ethics, no. 2, 2020, at 146 (with Emily Coffey, Allyson E. Gold, Mona Hanna-Attisha, Bruce Lanphear, Helen Y. Li, Ruth Ann Norton, David Rosner & Kate Walz).

Reducing the Justice Gap and Improving Health through Medical-Legal Partnerships, 40 J. Legal Med. 229 (2020) (with Danya E. Keene, Sascha Murillo, Alice Rosenthal & Ada M. Fenick).

Duty to Protect: Enhancing the Federal Framework to Prevent Childhood Lead Poisoning and Exposure to Environmental Harm, 18 Yale J. Health Pol’y L. & Ethics no. 2, at 1 (2019) (with Emily Coffey, Allyson E. Gold, Mona Hanna-Attisha, Bruce Lanphear, Helen Y. Li, Ruth Ann Norton, David Rosner & Kate Walz).

Lead Laws and Environmental Justice in New York, 39 N.Y. Env’t Law., Fall 2019, at 47 (with Katrina Smith Korfmacher & Matthew J. Chachère).

Medical-Legal Partnership: Lessons from Five Diverse MLPs in New Haven, Connecticut, 46 J.L. Med. & Ethics 602 (2018) (with Abbe R. Gluck & Katherine L. Kraschel).

Health Justice: A Framework (and Call to Action) for the Elimination of Health Inequity and Social Injustice, 65 Am. U. L. Rev. 275 (2015), reprinted in Public Health Law & Ethics: A Reader (Larry Gostin ed., 2018).

Contaminated Childhood: How the United States Failed to Prevent the Chronic Lead Poisoning of Low- Income Children and Communities of Color, 41 Harv. Env’t L. Rev. 493 (2017).

There's No Place Like Home: Reshaping Community Interventions and Policies to Eliminate Environmental Hazards and Improve Population Health for Low-Income and Minority Communities, 11 Harv. L & Pol'y Rev. Online S1 (2017) (with Allyson E. Gold).

When Poverty is the Diagnosis: The Health Effects of Living Without on the Individual, 4. Ind. J.L. & Soc. Equal. 1 (2016) (with Amanda M. Walsh). 

Educating the Next Generation of Health Law Leaders: Medical-Legal Partnership and Interprofessional Graduate Education, 35 J. Legal Med. 113 (2014).

Educating the Invincibles: Strategies for Teaching the Millennial Generation in Law School, 20 Clinical L. Rev. 1 (2013) (with Colleen F. Shanahan).

Adaptive Clinical Teaching, 19 Clinical L. Rev. 517 (2013) (with Colleen F. Shanahan).

Interdisciplinary Health Partnership Between Graduate Schools and Host Communities, in Town and Gown: Legal Strategies for Effective Collaboration 235 (Cynthia A. Baker & Patricia E. Salkin eds., 2013).

Honoring A Common Humanity: Maxims for Achieving Social Justice, Schweitzer Leadership Award Acceptance Remarks, 19 Pub. Int. L. Rep. 147 (2013).

The Health Justice Project: A Collaborative Commitment to Solving Real World Problems, 9 Ind. Health L. Rev. 523 (2012).

Advancing Health Law & Social Justice in the Clinic, the Classroom and the Community, 21 Annals Health L. 237 (2012) (with John Ammann, Lisa Bliss, Sylvia Caley, Elizabeth Tobin Tyler & Robert Pettignano).

The Health Justice Project: Interdisciplinary Advocacy to Overcome Social Determinants of Health, 1 Can. J. Poverty L., no. 1, 2012, at 164 (with Allyson E. Gold & April Schweitzer).

The ADA Amendments Act: An Overview of Recent Changes to the Americans with Disabilities Act, 4 Am. Const. Soc’y Advance 53 (2010). 

Bending the Arc, 16 Geo. J. on Poverty L. & Pol’y 283 (2010).

The Redefined Hero: Discovering Champions of Social Change, 16 Geo. J. on Poverty L. & Pol’y 273 (2009).

The ADA Amendments Act of 2008, 13 Tex. J. on C.L. & C.R. 187 (2008) (with Chai R. Feldblum & Kevin Barry).

In the Best Interests of the Child?: An International Human Rights Analysis of the Treatment of Unaccompanied Minors in Australia and the United States, 14 Ind. Int’l & Comp. L. Rev. 729 (2004).


Eviction Moratoria: Most Populous U.S. Cities, Inter-university Consortium for Pol. & Soc. Rsch. (2023) (with Robert Koehler),

Eviction Moratoria & Housing Policy: Federal, State, Commonwealth, and Territory, Inter-university Consortium for Pol. & Soc. Rsch. (2021) (with Robert Koehler),

COVID-19 Housing Policy Scorecard, Eviction Lab (2020) (with Anne Kat Alexander, Alieza Durana, Robert Koehler & Matthew Desmond),


U.S. Eviction Policy is Harming Children: The Case for Sustainable Eviction Prevention to Promote Health Equity, Harv. L. Sch. Bill Health (Nov. 2, 2022),

Opinion, The Eviction Moratorium Limbo Laid Bare the Eviction System’s Extreme Dysfunction, Wash. Post (Aug. 12, 2021, 9:15 AM) (with Antonia K. Fasanelli, Rasheedah Phillips & Kathyrn Sabbeth),

Opinion, The Eviction Moratorium is About to Expire – and the Situation is Dire, Guardian (July 29, 2021, 6:14 AM) (with Peter Hepburn),

How Policymakers (and Courts) Sabotaged Eviction Moratoria, The Appeal (Apr. 2, 2021),

How Tenants’ Right to Counsel Can End Inequality in the Eviction System—And Save Lives, The Appeal (Mar. 10, 2021),

The American Eviction Crisis, Explained, The Appeal (Mar. 3, 2021),

The Coming Wave of Evictions Will Significantly Worsen America's COVID-19 Crisis, The Appeal (Dec. 7, 2020) (with Gregg Gonsalves & Danya Keene),

Opinion, “The System Is Failing All the Families that Really Need It”: How the Threat of Eviction Has Perpetuated Health Inequity and Racial Injustice During the Pandemic, Street Sense Media (Dec. 17, 2020),

States Shouldn’t Hinder Local Gov’ts in COVID-19 Tenant Aid, Law360 (Oct. 4, 2020, 8:02 PM) (with Nestor Davidson),

A Tidal Wave of Evictions is Forming. We Can Still Stop It, Bos. Globe, Sept. 24, 2020, at R10.

The COVID-19 Eviction Crisis: an Estimated 30-40 Million People in America Are at Risk, Aspen Inst. (Aug. 7, 2020) (with David Bloom Robinson, Stacy Butler, Lavar Edmonds, Sam Gilman, Katherine Lucas McKay, Lisa Owens, Neil Steinkamp, Diane Yentel & Zach Neumann),

Poisonous Homes: The Fight for Environmental Justice in Federally Assisted Housing, Shriver Ctr. on Poverty L. (June 2020) (with Emily Coffey, Kate Walz, Debbie Chizewer, Mark Templeton & Robert Weinstock),

Opinion, Coronavirus Rent Freezes are Ending - and a Wave of Evictions will Sweep America, NBC News (June 22, 2020, 4:30 AM),

What an Effective Eviction Moratorium Must Include, Shelterforce (Mar. 24, 2020) (with Eric Dunn, Norrinda Brown Hyatt & Rachel Blake),

Health Justice Strategies to Combat COVID-19: Protecting Vulnerable Communities During a Pandemic, Health Affairs Blog (Mar. 19, 2020) (with Lindsay F. Wiley),

Lead Safe Housing Rule: Overview and Opportunities for Public Health Advocates, Network for Pub. Health L. (Mar. 2020) (with Heather A. Walter-McCabe & Colleen Healy Boufides),

Opinion, An Unconscionable Act on Lead Poisoning Standards, New Haven Reg. (June 20, 2019) (with David Cantonwine, Miranda Ip & Ruth Ann Norton),

Opinion, New York’s Public Housing System is the Size of a City. It’s Failing Children, Wash. Post (Feb. 11, 2019, 4:00 PM),

Contaminated Childhood: The Chronic Lead Poisoning of Low-Income Children and Communities of Color in Federally Assisted Housing, Health Affrs. Blog (Aug. 8, 2017),

Opinion, Poison in Our Walls, N.Y. Times, Mar. 5, 2016, at A23.

May All Creatures Be at Peace, Chi. Daily L. Bull. (Sept. 11, 2011),

Shaking a Cup: Panhandling in Indianapolis, NUVO (Mar. 3, 2004), This article received the Society of Professional Journalists Award (2005).