In the News

In the News


Housing

New IAF Organization Launched In Anne Arundel County, MD: 1,100+ Leaders Unite, Pledge to Make the County a Better Place

Monday, November 19, 2018
ACT

 After two years of listening to communities, congregations and individuals, including 2,800 one-on-one conversations, over 1,100 leaders from Anne Arundel County packed First Christian Community Church for an inaugural action to commit to working together to make Anne Arundel a better place for everyone to live.

Key issues identified as priorities for the newest IAF organization, Anne Arundel Connecting Together (ACT) were: Affordable Housing, Safe and Effective Schools, Efficient and Useful Public Transportation, Freedom from Addiction and Mental Health Challenges, Just and Fair Immigration Policies and Gun Violence Reduction and Safety in the Community. ACT asked candidates for county council, state’s attorney and county executive in attendance if they would pledge to work with and meet regularly with ACT, and all but one agreed.


Housing

Jersey City Together Wins Final Authorization for $170 million in Bonding for 95-Acre Bayfront Site

Monday, November 19, 2018
Jersey City Together

A year and a half ago, Jersey City Together launched a campaign to change the way a 95-acre site would be developed so that it would include real affordable housing. On October 10th, the Jersey City Council approved the final ordinance to authorize $170 million worth of municipal bonds for the site's purchase and for investing in its infrastructure. The city now hopes 35+ percent of the site's units can be affordable (potentially 2,800 units). The City and State of New Jersey required Honeywell to clean up the site after organizing pressure and a lawsuit by a previous IAF-affiliate in Jersey City called the Interfaith Community Organization. 


Housing

ReBUILD Metro Secures $1.5 Million from Weinberg Foundation to Revitalize Johnston Square Neighborhood

Monday, November 19, 2018
BUILD

ReBUILD Metro, a third-party developer that works with Metro IAF affiliate, BUILD, to revitalize neighborhoods, secured $1.5 million from the Weinberg Foundation to fill the gap of a 60 unit LIHTC building in Johnston Square in Baltimore. Fourteen homes have already been rehabbed, and this building is the turn-key development needed to truly launch BUILD's rebuilding work in Johnston Square, which will be the 4th neighborhood BUILD is rebuilding in East Baltimore.


Community organizing in Virginia, accountability assembly

VOICE Secures Mayoral Candidate Pledges on Affordable Housing

Wednesday, July 25, 2018
Metro IAF
VOICE (link is external) and ARHA Resident Association Leaders presented the VOICE Issue Agenda in the context of the racial history of Old Town Alexandria. Following the presentation of 1,400+ voter pledge cards, VOICE received commitments from both mayoral candidates to work with VOICE on the following:
  • Working to enforce the affordable housing parameters set in the Housing Master Plan
  • Strengthening Resolution 830 to ensure preservation of public housing in the city
  • Ensuring a culture in public housing that encourages resident participation in the decision making of public housing
  • Increasing equity in public schools around suspension rates
  • Researching city contractors and sub-contractors to ensure that all people who work in the city can live in the city....

Affordable Housing, Downtown Durham

Durham CAN Pressures City Council to Prioritize Affordable Housing

Wednesday, July 25, 2018
Metro IAF

Over 100 leaders pressured Durham City Council to prioritize affordable housing on over 4 acres of city-owned land in the heart of Downtown Durham. As a result, the mayor presented a proposal that reflected Durham CAN's top priority and included all of their demands: a minimum of 80 units of affordable housing for families under 60% AMI, including a commitment for a developer to work with the Durham Housing Authority to accept residents with vouchers. CAN won strong press coverage, including a front page story in the local newspaper.


Affordable Housing, NYCHA, Black Mold, Asthma

NYCHA Nightmare: Creeping Black Mold Throughout Public Housing Apt.

Thursday, July 5, 2018
New York Daily News

When police entered the ninth-floor public housing apartment of 83-year-old Mary Ellison last winter in the Haber Houses in Coney Island, they beheld a gothic nightmare: thick black mold covering the walls and ceiling throughout the apartment.

EMTs were summoned and Ellison was immediately removed from the Brooklyn apartment and transported to nearby Coney Island Hospital....

 


WIN, Affordable Housing, Immigration Reform

WIN Organizes for Immigrant Legal Services, Affordable Housing

Monday, May 21, 2018
Metro IAF

On April 25th Washington Interfaith Network (link is external) (WIN) packed the basement of Sacred Heart Catholic Church with 304 leaders and 6 candidates vying for Council Member of Ward 1 in D.C. Sacred Heart is the largest immigrant church in DC and the turnout reflected that diversity. The action was WIN’s first attempt at doing an action in both English and Spanish, using 300 interpretation headsets. Demands were made for $2.5 million to expand legal assistance for immigrants, to build affordable housing on a piece of land owned by the National Parks Service, and to take on a slum landlord in the neighborhood.....


Jersey City Together

Jersey City Together Demands Action on Rent Control, Code Enforcement

Thursday, May 17, 2018
Hudson County View

Advocacy group Jersey City Together, along with Mayor Steven Fulop and other officials, announced aggressive rent control enforcement actions for tenants and landlords, during Tuesday’s open forum at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church.....


Affordable Housing, Linkage Fee, Mayor Garcetti, economic homelessness

One LA Partners with Mayor on $100M Affordable Housing Fund

Sunday, February 11, 2018
West / Southwest IAF

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.

Leaders told poignant stories about illegal evictions (and threats of eviction) from garage apartment conversions in Pacoima, families with children hiding their homelessness in West LA, and youth and senior citizens battling despair in the face of daunting odds while “living rough” near La Placita Catholic Church downtown...


Affordable Housing, Urban Matters, Providence Place

WIN, UrbanMatters Advance 100 Units of Affordable Housing in DC

Sunday, January 28, 2018
Metro IAF

UrbanMatters, an affordable housing developer established in part by Washington Interfaith Network (WIN), is celebrating forward movement on a 100 unit housing development in Ward 7 of Washington, DC. Providence Place, which will be built on land of the Progressive National Baptist Convention Headquarters, received zoning approval from the DC Zoning Commission and finalized a Community Benefits Agreement. The project is expected to break ground by November of 2018.


Mayor Steven Fulop, Honewell, Toxic Waste Cleanup

Jersey City Together Persuades Mayor to Pledge 50% Affordability on Site

Monday, January 15, 2018
Jersey Journal

In January, Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop sent a letter to Honeywell to demand an increase in affordability on a 95-acre site from 5% to 50%. This comes after Jersey City Together spoke to thousands of people across Jersey City and secured commitments from the majority of the city council in support of this change. The Interfaith Community Organization, a previous IAF affiliate, successfully sued Honeywell to force remediation of chromium contamination on the site decades ago.


http://www.swiaf.org/news/moc-wins-significant-step-on-renter-protection/

MOC Wins Significant Step for Renters Protection in Marin County

Tuesday, December 12, 2017
Marin Independent Journal

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.

On December 12, in response to pressure from MOC leaders, the Marin Board of Supervisors unanimously voted to support a mandatory mediation program for renters. The ordinance will require mediation when requested by a tenant or landlord for rent increases exceeding 5% per year. The ordinance would apply to unincorporated areas of Marin County which include approximately 8,300 renter-occupied units.  About 1 in 4 of those renters pay more than 50% of household income on rent...


Disaster Recovery, Hurricane Harvey, Texas IAF, organizing in Texas

For Renters, Harvey was the First Blow, Followed by Orders to Move

Friday, September 8, 2017
New York Times
"Members of The Metropolitan Organization, a group of Houston religious congregations, urged Houston’s City Council on Wednesday to establish a grace period for late September rent payments. The poor and undocumented were especially vulnerable, clergy members said.
 
“Many of them have not worked nine or 10 days now because their businesses have been blown away,” said the Rev. Edward Gomez, an Episcopal priest...."

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.


Pages