Equipping Latinos and other DC-area residents with the skills and financial tools to create a better future for their families and communities.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 17, 2013
DC RESIDENTS UNITE FOR QUALITY AFFORDABLE HOUSING AT 6th ANNUAL CITYWIDE TENANT TOWN HALL
Four days before first Council vote on DC budget, 250 renters will call upon the DC Council to keep promises to fully fund key affordable housing programs
WHAT: 6th Annual Citywide Tenant Town Hall
WHERE: All Souls Unitarian Church, 16th & Columbia St NW (1500 Harvard St NW)
WHEN: Saturday, May 18th, 2013; 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM
WHO (confirmed): Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs; DC Housing Authority; DC Housing Finance Agency; Office of the Tenant Advocate; Office of Latino Affairs; Office on African Affairs; Office on Asian Pacific Islander Affairs; AARP Legal Counsel for the Elderly; CARECEN; Asian Pacific American Legal Resource Center; ONE DC; Legal Aid DC; Bread for the City; Washington Legal Clinic for the Homeless; Children’s Law Center; Many Languages One Voice; and tenants from across the city (250 attendees expected). *** Pending invitations to all DC councilmembers ***
WASHINGTON – In the wake of the DC Council voting to divert $4 million of funding from the Housing Production Trust Fund on May 7th, the Latino Economic Development Center (LEDC) and the Coalition for Non-profit Housing and Economic Development (CNHED) Housing for All Campaign are organizing the 6th Annual Tenant Town Hall with renters and community-based organizations to call upon DC public officials to keep their commitment to affordable housing.
Residents will present to the directors of DC housing agencies and Council members their housing priorities and solutions, including the pressing need to maintain the FY14 portion of the $100 million commitment to affordable housing proposed by Mayor Gray.
Tenants will champion the proposed $20 million commitment to the Housing Production Trust Fund; an additional $2 million for the tenant based Local Rent Supplement Program to eliminate housing burden for 130 extremely low income households; and maintaining current funding for the Home Purchase Assistance Program as a critical tool to secure an affordable path to homeownership.
The Trust Fund is the key tool used by tenants and affordable housing developers to preserve and develop affordable housing in DC. Since 2000, more than 1500 units of affordable housing have been preserved by tenant associations utilizing the Trust Fund to purchase their buildings under the Tenant Opportunity to Purchase Act.
After years of depleted resources, the prospects for the Trust Fund brightened when DC Mayor Vincent Gray proposed a one-time, $100 million commitment to support affordable housing. Since then, the DC Council has approved $63 million for the Trust Fund, diverting $4 million on May 7th to support DC summer schools.
“DC can’t reach its goals for the production and preservation of affordable housing if the Trust Fund can be raided to cover other programs,” said Affordable Housing Preservation Director Farah Fosse. “The Mayor has committed to stopping the practice of transferring funds from the Trust Fund for other purposes. We need the Council to do the same.”
Tenants will also launch a new campaign for safe, affordable housing – issuing an urgent call for housing officials to address mold, asbestos, and lead problems in multifamily apartment buildings.
When residents complain about mold, housing inspectors can only cite for “dampness.” Consequently, if the landlord just paints over mold, there is no way for tenants to make sure that it is properly eliminated. Mold can cause serious health problems, especially for children, the elderly, and people who suffer from allergies: asthma, coughing, allergy symptoms (sneezing, runny nose, itchy or burning eyes, inflammation), sore throat, wheezing, and difficulty breathing.
In its 6th year, the Tenant Town Hall has served as a dynamic forum through which tenants have secured major victories for DC renters, including the right to sue landlords in DC Superior Court for refusing to fix housing code violations and the creation of DCRA’s proactive housing code inspections program.
For more information, contact:
Ash Kosiewicz, Communications and Advocacy Director, (202) 425-1303; firstname.lastname@example.org
Farah Fosse, Affordable Housing Preservation Director; (202) 590-4369; email@example.com
Join LEDC at the 6th Annual Tenant Town Hall on Saturday, May 18th at the All Souls Unitarian Church from 1-4 PM.
The Tenant Town Hall has a strong track record of winning the priorities put forth at the event - including a tenant right to sue for poor housing conditions! Get involved to build a stronger tenant movement in DC.
Saturday, May 18
All Souls Unitarian Church
1500 Harvard St NW
(16th and Columbia Rd NW, 3 blocks from Columbia Heights Metro)
Free lunch, 1-2 PM
Free childcare with RSVP by May 10.
Interpretation in Spanish, Amharic and Chinese.
1 – 2 PM: Speak with DC housing agencies - DCHA (Housing Authority), DCRA, DHCD -legal service providers and non-profit organizations. Lunch
2 – 4 PM: Town Hall presentations by residents focusing on DC’s affordable housing budget and Safe and Healthy Housing (no mold, asbestos or lead!) and responses from elected officials and Housing Agencies.
|6th Annual Tenant Town Hall Tenant Priorities||2013-05-15||358.82 KB|
LEDC is a finalist for the 2013 Citi Microentrepreneurship Award.Click below to learn how to vote for LEDC and help us win $75,000 in support of our programs!
As part of the Association for Enterprise Opportunity's national conference, the awards celebrate the spirit of innovation, collaboration and imagination in microbusiness.
LEDC applied, and we are one of three finalists in the Microbusiness Development Organization - Capital Access Category.
We had to make a video for the last part of the competition, so watch the video and cast your vote for LEDC by clicking http://www.aeoawards.com/2013finalist-videos/ .
The more votes, the better chance we have to win $75,000 in support of our work!
Public voting just opened. Voting ends Friday, April 19 at 11:59 p.m. Eastern. You can submit one vote per email per day, so visit and vote every day through Friday.
Please pass on this link to your network of colleagues, clients, friends and family so they can vote too: http://www.aeoawards.com/2013finalist-videos/.
We need everyone on deck to help us get over the top. We're almost there!
Thanks for your support!
Director of Communications and Advocacy