Housing

Photo Credit: Frank Oudeman / OTTO ©

Housing

Wed Jul 26, 2017

On July 10th Lake County United leaders turned out and voted at the Warren Township Special meeting in favor of the Township selling 19 acres of vacant land, which allows Lake County United to pursue a plan to build 150 units of affordable housing.


Wed Jul 26, 2017

After two years of fighting for better living conditions, residents of the Northwest Park apartment complex in Silver Spring celebrated the beginning of the replacement of 4,100 windows in the 75-building complex.

Action in Montgomery and the property’s mostly immigrant tenants won a $2 million agreement with property management to replace the windows due to toxic mold issues that have caused asthma in some of the tenants’ children. The project will take four years to complete.

[Photo Credit: Sasha-Ann Simons / WAMU]


Thu May 11, 2017
In May AIM won an additional $59 Million for affordable housing, bringing AIM’s total to $600 Million over the past 15 years!  The funding will provide rental assistance, end chronic homelessness in the county, and provide funding for affordable housing development. AIM has been fighting consistently and persistently for affordable housing since 2002, when it successfully pushed for the first significant funding in the Housing Initiative Fund.
 
Expansion of After School Programming:
 
Through a sustained effort that brought together leaders of AIM congregations, principals, teachers, and Recreation staff, AIM won free, high quality after school care in two high poverty elementary schools in the 2016-17 school year. Dream Academy kicked off this February and ran until June, providing 240 students with after school academic enrichment, recreation time, a nutritious meal, and AIM-facilitated parent organizing and engagement.   AIM is now celebrating another victory, the expansion of Dream Academy to a total of four schools in the new financial year, and the expansion of the program from four days a week to five, and is equipped to serve 480 students next year.
 
Dream Academy has already made a difference in the communities where it operates. As part of the campaign to win this expansion, students and parents testified about the program in front of the county council. One mother spoke of the impact Dream Academy has had on her son’s grades and behavior in school saying, “The extra hour of academic support gives my son and other students the opportunity to fully learn concepts from the normal school day…I really do appreciate his teacher and the administration for supporting my son, but Dream Academy, I mean it, is something special. The academic enrichment my son receives is very impactful… He really really loves Dream Academy so much, there is no day he doesn’t tell me he is looking forward to it.” 
 

Tue Apr 25, 2017

WIN leaders packed local community meetings and a board of zoning hearing winning approval for the construction of 3 “short term housing” facilities (a more dignified term than family shelter).  On Wednesday April 5th, the DC Board of Zoning Adjustment unanimously voted to approve the zoning variances and exceptions for the construction of short term family housing in wards 3 and 5! This vote is a major milestone in the effort to close the dilapidated DC General Family Shelter, and helps the city to more equally share the responsibility for caring for the most vulnerable among us. With this vote, zoning has been approved in all six facilities going under construction, and the next step forward is breaking ground!

Tue Mar 7, 2017

One LA leaders celebrated a second election victory for the most vulnerable in Los Angeles County after the March 7 election.  Together, with a coalition of other organizations and with the support of County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas, leaders worked to pass Measure H— a quarter cent sales tax to fund critical services for homeless populations as well as homelessness prevention for those at risk.

Following successful efforts to pass Measure HHH in November, a county-wide ballot measure to fund the construction of housing for the homeless, One LA leaders rallied again to support Measure H in 2017.  Expecting low turnout, leaders organized civic academies and information sessions in their congregations to encourage members to vote.

One day prior to the election, One LA leaders joined Rabbi Dara Frimmer of Temple Isaiah and Fr. Arturo Corral of La Placita in lending moral authority to the measure at a press conference in which they stood flanked by Mayor Eric Garcetti and Supervisors Mark Ridley Thomas and Sheila Kuehl.

Measure H passed by only 2 percentage points, approximately 16,000 votes, driving home the lesson that all politics is local, and every vote counts.


Tue Feb 14, 2017

Seeking redress for deplorable conditions in their apartments, tenants of Northwest Park and leaders from Action in Montgomery (AIM) spent the last year organizing to hold Kay Management accountable for reoccuring mold and persistent problems with rodents, bed bugs, and cockroaches that have triggered or exacerbated asthma problems. After the discovery of over 2,000 housing violations, tenants and AIM have worked to get a number of improvements, the latest of which was a commitment from Kay Management to replace all 1,950 windows in the 800-unit complex over the next four years and overhaul their policy for preventing and remediating mold.

Tue Feb 14, 2017

Six months after advocating that a 10-acre city-owned property be developed with a variety of affordable housing options for local working families, AMOS leaders succeeded in expanding the number of rental and lower-priced housing units to be made available.

Initially, the land parcel was zoned for single family detached homes, with some of the loudest voices calling for exclusively owner-occupied units.  Thanks to the intervention of AMOS leaders, Ames City Council voted for more affordable housing to be developed on-site, including 60% to be made available at affordable rates, and to include rental housing in its Request for Proposals.

The following month, the City of Ames further committed to two years of matching funds for an affordable housing trust fund that was created at AMOS’ initiative.  This move will help the fund gain funding and build momentum, locally.

Housing Trust Fund Task Force Continues Progress Toward Affordable HousingAmes Tribune

Housing Trust Fund Task Force Approved for IncorporationAmes Tribune

Affordable Housing Task Force Holds First MeetingAmes Tribune

Housing Trust Fund Task Force Approved for IncorporationAmes Tribune

AMOS Ups Number of Affordable Housing Units in New Ames DevelopmentAMOS


Fri Feb 10, 2017

Durham CAN leaders demanded and won public agreement from the Durham City Council for the construction of affordable housing at a publicly owned lot located next to the Durham Station Transportation Center. At least 80% of the units built in this lot will be affordable to families at 60% AMI or below. City Council Moves Forward with Mix-Income Project.

Fri Feb 10, 2017

As part of a larger strategy to secure affordable housing options in Portland, Oregon, leaders of the Metropolitan Alliance for Common Good (MACG) and allies secured unanimous passage of an emergency tenant relocation assistance ordinance, persuading an “on the fence” Commissioner to support the measure.  Seventy-five MACG leaders packed City Hall chambers, with direct views of the commissioners as they voted.

Three MACG leaders testified in support; one read a statement from a St. Andrew parish leader who had been prepared to speak, but stayed home due to recent ICE activity in the city.

The new temporary law requires that Portland landlords pay $2,900 – $4,500 to tenants who are evicted without cause or have to move as a result of a +10% rent increase.  Leaders see the approval of this temporary measure as a critical step toward providing immediate relief.  The plan now is to target the state legislature to pass Just Cause Eviction and Rent Stabilization legislation this year.

Testimony: Dr. Luis Manriquez, Portland Primary Care Doctor

Testimony: Gillian Weisgram, St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church

Photos


Fri Oct 3, 2014

Marin Co., CA - Thanks to the Marin Organizing Committee, Fairfax became the first city in Marin County to financially commit to expanding a seasonal homeless shelter into a year-round project; the Town Council approved funding at $16,392.

Soon after, leaders held a 'Housing Sabbath' to raise awareness of the campaign. MOC leaders plan to target nine other cities, in addition to Marin County, to cover the cost of expansion.

More here...


Fri Sep 13, 2013

VOICE's Bank & Foreclosure Accountability Campaign secured $30 million in commitments for their Prince William Restoration Fund from Bank of America, General Electric, and VA Housing Development Authority (VHDA).  The fund will support a pilot that would:

(1) rehab 100 abandoned / blighted properties in neighborhoods devastated by foreclosure for affordable homeownership & rental housing,

(2) allow for the development of 1,500 units of rental housing over the next 15 years in Northern Virginia for families.  

VOICE announced the commitments at 500+ person action in Woodbridge VA with Senator Mark Warner and representatives from Bank of America, General Electric, and VHDA.  When JPMorgan refused to participate in the restoration fund, VOICE organized a direct action at their DC Private Banking Offices with 60 leaders. VOICE's pioneering work has garnered significant national media coverage by USA TodayCNN, and the Washington Post.


Sat Aug 4, 2012

After an extensive campaign documenting safety and health hazards in New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) developments, Metro IAF NYC affiliates successfully pushed Mayor Bloomberg and the director of the housing authority to install security cameras in 85 of the most dangerous housing developments, as well as other security upgrades representing a $10 million investment.

Sat Jun 16, 2012

EBC completed construction of the first two phases of 1,525 units of new Nehemiah owner-occupied homes in the Spring Creek section of East New York with more than 341 families already settled in. Further construction on the third phase is set to begin soon after.

In addition to the 1,525 Nehemiah units (consisting of single-family, two-family, and three-family homes, and eight unit apartments), there will be three parks, a supermarket, and an EMS station. The brand new Spring Creek Educational Campus opened in September 2012 and is home to two 6-12 schools and a district 75 school. The $73 million campus features a full gymnasium, exercise and weight training room, auditorium, a college level research library and technology lab, two fully stocked music rooms and smart boards in every classroom.

The homes were designed by architect Alexander Gorlin and assembled locally at the Brooklyn Yard.  

Click here for the background on East Brookyn Congregations Nehemiah Housing

Architect Credit: Alexander Gorlin / Alexander Gorlin Architects

Photo Credit: Frank Oudeman / OTTO © 


Sun Sep 18, 2011

With TRF Development Partners, BUILD organizes to rebuild East Baltimore. In the worst housing market since the Great Depression, BUILD continues to rebuild the Oliver Community located in East Baltimore. 40 homes have been constructed, fully occupied. 20 are under construction. 


Thu Aug 11, 2011

In the Spring Nehemiah Development, EBC leaders will build 1525 affordable homes and develop two new small quality schools.

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In the News


affordable housing in Alexandria, Virginia IAF

Faith-Based Group Leans on Alexandria Council for Affordable Housing

Wednesday, July 26, 2017
Washington Post
An increasingly powerful coalition of faith-based activists won a commitment from a majority of the Alexandria City Council on Tuesday to increase support for public housing and affordable housing in the city.
 
About 200 supporters and members of Virginians Organized for Interfaith Community Engagement (VOICE) jammed St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in Alexandria to call for stronger commitments and more money to house lower-income residents who increasingly find themselves priced out of areas once affordable to them...

Fox River Valley Initiative, Dupage United, mixed-income housing

FRVI Pressures Batavia City Council to Accept Mixed Income Housing

Tuesday, July 18, 2017
Metro IAF & Kane County Chronicle

The Fox River Valley Initiative is fighting diligently to secure 8 YES votes for 80 units of mixed income housing in the city of Batavia, IL. 64 of the units would be affordable and 8 used for people with disabilities. At a recent housing forum, 140 people attended, with only 15 voices against the new development. 


San Fernando Valley, granny flats, economic homelessness in LAUSD

One LA Fights for Affordable Housing in the San Fernando Valley

Wednesday, June 7, 2017
One LA

As a way to act on the extraordinary pressures they experience around housing, San Fernando Elementary school leaders (including twenty parents and their Principal, Maria Awakian) and One LA’s education team testified before the San Fernando City Council.

Publicly speaking for the very first time, three parents shared how 1 of 8 children in San Fernando area schools experience some degree of homelessness, often resulting in disruptions of academic progress and difficulties in staying awake for class....


Affordable Housing, Durham City Council, Durham Housing Authority

Durham CAN Wins $4M for Affordable Housing

Tuesday, June 6, 2017
IndyWeek
The Durham City Council on Monday night approved a $4.162 million grant that will allow the Durham Housing Authority to buy back twenty acres of vacant land known as Fayette Place.
 
The money will come from the city’s general fund and can only be used to acquire the land and maintain it until it is sold or developed.
 
Development Ventures Incorporated, a real estate development company controlled by the Housing Authority, and Campus Apartments, which currently owns the land, have agreed to close on the deal no later than June 16.... 

Lake County United, 40 unit affordable housing

Lake County United Celebrates Completion of Fairhaven Crossing

Wednesday, May 24, 2017
Lake County United

Lake County United identified the land, secured the site, established a development team, and built the community support for a 40-unit affordable housing complex in Mundelein, IL. Over 300 Lake County United leaders gathered to celebrate the opening of Fairhaven Crossing, which will give everyone, including residents with disabilities, the opportunity to live as independently as possible. The unit includes a community center and computer room.


Affordable Housing, fair lending, Predatory Lending, landlords

OTOC Fights for Protection from Predatory Landlords, Lenders

Friday, May 5, 2017
West / Southwest IAF

OTOC convened a nonpartisan accountability assembly with twelve candidates for Mayor and City Council for Omaha with a standing-room-only audience of 350 leaders at St. Leo the Great Catholic Church.

Leaders told stories illustrating a negotiated agenda in support of safe rental housing, reduction of predatory payday lending fees, separating yard waste and garbage, as well as assurances that police...


Affordable Housing, NYCHA, repairs, Mold

East Brooklyn Congregations Demands Housing Repairs from NYCHA

Tuesday, April 4, 2017
DNA Info

When Brooklyn Director and his managers refused to meet with 200 NYCHA tenants from four developments because the Director’s office could not afford the one hour of overtime pay, residents decided to act. During four days of action, EBC and over 500 tenants participated in confronting NYCHA managers in-person and by conducting phone banks to demand the respect and repairs they deserved. The work of over 225 leaders and students from 14 institutions also forced Transportation Commissioner, Polly Trottenberg, to publicly commit to meeting with leaders in May to discuss a plan to make neighborhoods safer.


Jersey City Together, Affordable Housing, city inspections, landlord

Jersey City Together Wins Long Overdue City Housing Inspections

Tuesday, March 28, 2017
New Jersey.Com

On Sunday, March 26th, 175+ tenant & Jersey City Together leaders gathered at St Paul's Episcopal Church to hold one of the city's largest landlords, Trendy Management, accountable. The owner, Esther Kaplan, promised to attend, but cancelled at 12pm the day of the action.

Following a building tour with leaders, press, & public officials, the city has now begun systematically investigating their buildings. Inspections of the first 6 of their properties have resulted in more than 325 violations. The company owns more than 140 rent-controlled apartment buildings in Jersey City.


NYCHA, Mold, Affordable Housing, Fr. Francis Skelly, Organizing in NYC

Mayor Budgets $1B to Fix NYCHA Roofs, But Critics Say Not It's Enough

Tuesday, January 24, 2017
New York Daily News

....Metro Industrial Areas Foundation, questioned whether repairs will come fast enough to alleviate the toxic mold that afflicts so many public housing tenants.

“Ten years is an eternity for the children and adults who suffer with respiratory conditions now,” Metro IAF member Fr. Francis Skelly, pastor of the Immaculate Conception Church in the South Bronx, said. “The health threats are urgent.”


Affordable Housing, Rent, Property Price Stabilization

Radical Model Fighting the Housing Crisis: Tie Property Prices to Income

Monday, January 16, 2017
The Guardian

Buried among the workhouse chic and the new brick apartment blocks is an unlikely experiment in building homes that will remain affordable to local people forever. After a decade of campaigning, the East London Community Land Trusthas succeeded in creating housing where the prices will be linked to local income in perpetuity, entirely detached from the superheated speculation of the property market....

As the capital’s first community land trust, the St Clement’s project was made possible because the site, home to a mental health hospital that closed in 2005, was owned by the Greater London Authority. After a long grassroots campaign, led by charity Citizens UK, the GLA asked the successful developer, Linden Homes, to work with the East London CLT group, which had also bid for the site. 

 


housing bond, accountability, Housing Rehabilitation

COPS / Metro Compels Accountability for Housing Bond

Thursday, December 15, 2016
Rivard Report & San Antonio Express-News

As the City of San Antonio’s first ever housing bond moved forward, COPS / Metro Alliance leaders pressed for accountability, arguing that the current structure of the bond excludes the concerns of long-time residents of San Antonio.  Leaders are fighting so that some funding can be directed to the rehabilitation of aging homes, multi-family housing that includes a mix of market, workforce and affordable rental rates, as well as guidelines to address questions of what kinds of developers and developments get funded.   Leaders challenged the mayor and city council to gather stakeholders to address these issues before the proposal goes to the voters.

Within hours, in response, the City Council voted to create an oversight committee to track development of the housing bond....


Carmelia Goffe, Nehemiah Housing, EBC Leader

Remembering Carmelia Goffe

Tuesday, December 13, 2016
New York Times

The Metro IAF sadly reports the death of Carmelia Goffe, East Brooklyn Congregations leader.  Ms. Goffe helped lead the resurrection of East New York through EBC's fights for Nehemiah housing, community policing and improved schools.  We ask that you continue to keep Ms. Goffe and her family in your prayers.


Affordable and Dignified Housing, Evictions, Josephine Lopez-Paul, organizing in Texas

Dallas Area Interfaith Fights Off Mass Evictions in West Dallas

Wednesday, October 12, 2016
Dallas Morning News

DAI, in collaboration with the Wesley Rankin Community school and center, organized a meeting to brief hundreds of worried renters about their rights as tenants, the basics of eviction law and to pressure the City of Dallas to intervene on tenants’ behalf.  Mayor Pro Tem Monica Alonzo, along with the Assistant City Attorney, assured renters that extra-legal evictions would not be tolerated.

The next day, the State District Judge Ken Molberg ordered the Dallas landlord to temporarily halt the mass evictions... 


Affordable Housing, Community Preservation Act, Community Organizing in Boston

GBIO Pushes for Community Preservation Act on Boston Ballot

Monday, October 10, 2016
Boston Globe

These days, grass-roots organizations such as Brown’s affordable housing alliance and the Greater Boston Interfaith Organization are undertaking a disciplined outreach effort to educate Boston residents on the measure’s potential impact, according to organizers.

Almost 30 church groups from across the region are holding themselves to a strict pledge. At a rally in September, each participating congregation promised to secure roughly 3,000 “yes” votes from Boston residents, and before Election Day, supporters plan to hold a rally on City Hall Plaza.

“We can’t just diagnose the problems with housing over and over again,” said Jeanette Callahan, a doctor who lives in Dudley Square and is organizing through her church to pass the November measure. “We keep thinking we’ve done something and we’ve done nothing. It’s time to look at a treatment plan.”


Affordable Housing, Sherman Park, 75 properties rehabilitated

Common Ground Rehabilitates 75 Properties

Wednesday, September 21, 2016
Common Ground

Common Ground has been working in the Sherman Park community since 2008. While visible progress doesn’t always make front page news, we are happy to report on some recent successes resulting from our community efforts.

For starters, Common Ground has rehabilitated 75 properties in the last five years that are now worth $6 MILLION, increasing property values, decreasing foreclosed properties and creating positive change. These 75 properties are now generating almost $200,000 in annual property tax revenue....


Affordable Housing, Vacant Lots, NYC, Rev. Skelly, Rev. Brawley

Metro IAF Leads the Way on Affordable Housing in New York City

Monday, February 22, 2016
New York Slant

New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer’s recent report that identified 1,130 vacant and city-owned lots is shocking, but all too familiar. Every empty lot represents a missed opportunity for the city to build more desperately needed affordable housing. What’s more, building on vacant sites means that no residents need to be displaced in the process, nor is there a need for the kind of complicated and controversial trade-offs that have mired Mayor Bill de Blasio’s proposed housing plan in a heated debate with housing advocates and community boards....


Mobile Home Regime, Mobile Home University, Dignified Housing

Austin Interfaith Wins Protections for Mobile Home Park Residents

Thursday, December 10, 2015
KXAN and Telemundo

Last July, Hidden Valley / High Meadows (mobile home) residents became distressed when lot rents for people on month-to-month leases were raised for the second time within a 12-month period.  New rules mandated improvements and standardizations — adding new costs to residents — including deck and railing upgrades, paint jobs, skirting repair, shed standardization, and control over inside window coverings.  Families were asked to demonstrate possession of a drivers’ license to drive on the property, impacting hundreds of residents. Many families scrambled to comply; some left....


Affordable Housing, Dignified Housing, slumlords, Mold, Crime

Immigrant Leaders Battle Mold, Crime and Slumlords in Dallas Apts.

Friday, December 4, 2015
Dallas Morning News

“It all started with a group of women,” said Dallas Area Interfaith (DAI) organizer Walker Moore, that “wanted to know what their rights were.”  With the guidance of DAI, the ladies went on to organize several meetings — at local churches and in apartments — to formulate a strategy to address mold, dilapidation and crime.

In November, extra chairs had to be hauled out to accommodate 160 people who gathered at San Juan Diego Catholic Church at a meeting in which they brought specific issues with apartment conditions straight to the police chief and City of Dallas elected officials....  


Bob Wilson, In-fill Development, Urban, Community Development

Durham (CAN) Infill Development a Good Sprawl Substitute

Thursday, November 5, 2015
News & Observer

With the election of a City Council and mayor firmly behind infill development, Durham CAN’s proposal to turn a barren publicly owned lot at the corner of Jackson and Willard streets into an affordable-housing complex looks like a no-brainer.

That’s good news for downtown Durham, which needs full-time residents to help sustain the renaissance of a once-forlorn area. It’s no longer lights out after work in downtown.

Durham CAN (Congregations, Associations and Neighborhoods) is a community coalition that has amassed political clout since its founding in 1997 as an affiliate of the Industrial Areas Foundation....


Arlington County Master Plan for Housing, Schools, Affordable Housing

Arlington Board Approves Additional Affordable Housing

Saturday, September 19, 2015
Washington Post

The Arlington County Board, in an unanimous vote, on Saturday passed an affordable housing plan that will add about 15,800 apartments affordable to low to moderate income households by 2040.

Three hours of personal and heartfelt testimony from those who said they have benefited from Arlington’s existing housing supports swayed the lawmakers who said they couldn’t recall more affecting testimonials in their tenures.

Carolina Perez described the impact of having a safe and stable apartment on her family, showing the board her daughter’s A-plus on a math assignment. “It really hurts us when people say low-income (families) are bringing down Arlington,” she said. “You are not wasting your money. You are investing in your future.”

Coverage of back story here.


Nationstar, Foreclosure Prevention, Edens, Keisha Krumm

Common Ground's "Million Winning Strategy" in Milwaukee

Tuesday, September 8, 2015
Shepherd Express

In our era of political polarization and highly negative partisan attacks, it’s rare to see community advocates who cheerfully—even gleefully—describe their years-long campaign to help struggling Milwaukeeans.

But Southeastern Wisconsin Common Ground’s Keisha Krumm and Jennifer O’Hear were all smiles when talking about their part in securing $30 million settlement between mortgage servicerNationstar Mortgage LLC and the City of Milwaukee.


MACG, Mary Nemmers, Affordable Housing, Portland, Oregon IAF

MACG considered a force for the common good in Portland

Tuesday, September 8, 2015
Portland Mercury

"We are in a crisis and people are being dispossessed from their homes and their neighborhoods," says Bob Brown, a MACG member who's been working on this issue for months. "It's bad, and it's going to get worse if we don't do something."

...Brown was one of 97 MACG members who, on September 1, packed a PHAC review hearing for that mandatory review process.

... At the September 1 hearing, the group unleashed its secret weapon—a former senior housing policy manager for the PDC named Leah Greenwood.... 


Foreclosure Prevention, Nationstar, Keisha Krumm, Wes Edens

Nationstar to Give $30 Million for Distressed Milwaukee Homeowners

Friday, August 28, 2015
Journal Sentinel of Milwaukee

"Common Ground is pleased that the mayor and Common Council President Michael Murphy negotiated aggressively in our behalf to get the best deal they could get for our city," she said.

"We are pleased with the result."


NYCHA, Olatoye, senior citizens, East Brooklyn Congregations

Metro IAF Pitches Own NYCHA Housing Plan

Thursday, August 13, 2015
The Real Deal

The Metro Industrial Areas Foundation invited several Brooklyn elected officials last month to hear a proposal to “infill” large swaths of open space at public housing developments in the borough with between 10,000 and 20,000 units of senior citizen housing.

The faith-based organization has developed low-income homes in parts of Brooklyn through its local chapter, East Brooklyn Congregations.


NYCHA, Harlem, South Bronx, apartments, Mold, leaks, New York IAF

Roof Repairs at Harlem NYCHA Building Made Leaks Worse

Wednesday, August 12, 2015
NY Daily News

“What’s happening in the King Towers echoes what we are seeing all over the city,” said Michael Stanley, an organizer with Metro Industrial Area Foundation, a housing advocate group that’s been critical of NYCHA for years.

Barbara Solomon, 59, says she has tried in vain to get management to fix her ceilings. “Too often, NYCHA doesn’t show up, but even where they are supposedly fixing things, the repairs are usually so ineffective that nothing is really resolved or the problem even gets worse,” Stanley said.


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