Austin Interfaith Fights for Affordability in Land Use Overhaul
60 Austin Interfaith leaders packed into Austin City Council Chambers for a hearing on CodeNEXT to support speakers Florence Briceno from Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic and Rev. Michael Floyd from All Saints Episcopal who testified for strong neighborhoods and affordability, and against displacement.
COPS/Metro Weighs In on Affordable Housing Taskforce
Leading the campaign to increase funding for owner-occupied housing rehab and affordable housing, COPS / Metro is now participating in the City of San Antonio's affordable housing taskforce.Read more
MOC Fights for Housing-First Shelter, Renters Protections
After commemorating the end of REST (a rotating and temporary winter shelter program created by Marin Organizing Committee (MOC) for homeless individuals and families) MOC leaders are now focusing on identifying funding for more permanent housing options, including a "housing first" approach to homelessness. "We have realized for some time that was just a lifeboat," said Purdy, a member of the First Presbyterian Church of San Rafael. "We kept people fed and out of the rain and cold but we did not end homelessness."
And after learning that most tenants that inquire about the landlord mediation program refrain from participation for fear of retaliation by their landlords, leaders are renewing their push for a "just cause" eviction ordinance. "It's hard to imagine tenants feeling safe requesting mediation from landlords, if the landlord has the right to evict them without cause," Meredith Parnell, chairwoman of the Marin Organizing Committee's renter protection team, said at a public hearing.Read more
COPS/Metro Fights for $6.5M in HUD Funds for Home Rehabs
With three months to decide how to spend $21 Million in HUD funding for affordable housing, several San Antonio Councilmembers are getting direct reminders from COPS / Metro leaders about their campaign promises to invest $6.5 Million in the rehabilitation of owner-occupied housing in older neighborhoods.
In spite of dispute over whether the commitment referred to new money or previous allocations, leaders are pressing on.Read more
Austin Interfaith Fights for Agenda in Primary Runoff Election, Knocks on Doors to Increase Voter Turnout
On May 10th, Austin Interfaith held an Accountability Roundtable with Texas House District 46 candidates Sheryl Cole and Chito Vela as well as US Congregational District 25 candidates Julie Oliver and Chris Perri at the Congregational Church of Austin. 100 leaders representing 10 Austin Interfaith institutions in East Austin and the University area gained commitments on an agenda of issues, developed from hundreds of small group conversations, which included education, immigration reform, affordability, and funding for public schools and workforce programs like Capital IDEA.
Leaders told stories about their experiences with homelessness, deportation of neighbors, essential financial support for adult job training, and inadequate school funding. All four candidates committed to advancing legislation regarding local control, limiting property taxes for low-income homeowners, restoring cuts to federal student aid, and repealing SB 4.Read more
One LA Partners with Mayor on $100M Affordable Housing Fund
500 One LA-IAF leaders assembled with Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti to discuss implementation of the recently passed linkage fee for affordable housing at St. Agnes Catholic Church, and to report on what is happening in their neighborhoods. Representing the first community organization with which the Mayor met, leaders challenged him to more deeply collaborate with the organization in the next few months.Read more
COPS/Metro Educates San Antonio Residents About $9M Home Rehab Program Leaders Expanded
Less than one year after more than 750 COPS / Metro leaders secured candidate pledges for increased municipal investments in home rehabilitation, leaders are now training hundreds of residents about the new program and how to apply. $9 Million has been set aside for qualifying residents â€” $6.5 Million from federal funds and the rest through the City of San Antonio.Read more
Marin Organizing Committee Wins Significant Step for Renter Protection
Less than a year after kicking off an organizing effort to address eviction threats in Marin County, the Marin Organizing Committee (MOC) won a significant victory.Read more
TMO Continues Push to Protect Harvey Tenants from Eviction
Building on their previous month's achievement of making tenants' rights a front-and-center issue in post-Harvey recovery, The Metropolitan Organization of Houston (TMO) continues working with documented -- and undocumented -- immigrants to ensure their rights are protected.Read more
Houston Mayor, Texas Senator Join TMO in Call on Landlords for Post-Harvey Grace Period for Renters
Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner and Texas Senator Sylvia Garcia joined TMO in calling on landlords to extend a 30-day grace period and to refrain from charging renters' fees and penalties following the devastation left by Hurricane Harvey.
According to TMO, some landlords use computerized systems that automatically charge penalties for late payments regardless of Houston being in post-Harvey recovery. Rev. Ed Gomez of St. Paul's/San Pablo Episcopal Church shared stories of tenants who work in the service industry and, due to the storm, missed days of work and are now unable to pay their rent at this time. "People are not asking for a handout but a hand up as we get through this difficult time," he said.
Turner, Garcia and other TMO leaders were forceful in urging undocumented immigrants not to shy away from assistance for fear of being asked for papers. Said Mayor Turner, "We are not going to tolerate anybody in this city being victimized because they may be poor or because they may be undocumented or because they may not speak the language. We expect people to treat people right, with dignity and respect."
Alcalde de Houston Pide a Propietarios de Apartamentos no Abusar de los Inquilinos Damnificados por Harvey, Univision
Lanzan Advertencia a Arrendatarios Que Abusan de Inquilinos, Telemundo
Houston Mayor to Discuss Post-Harvey Evictions, KPRC 2
Mayor Turner Urges Landlords to be Flexible After Harvey, ABC-13
Mayor Turner Fires Back at Houston Landlords Mistreating Renters, CW39
Mayor Turner Enforcing Renters Rights Following Harvey, FOX 26
Turner Asks Houston Landlords to Grant One Month Grace Period to Renters, Houston Public Media (NPR)
Mayor Turner Names Former Shell CEO as Recovery Czar, Houston Press