The Battle for Affordable Housing
“It serves our local community to have county workers live locally. When disaster hits, we are there to open the local assistance centers, staff the shelters, clear the roads, answer the call-center phones, and help keep residents’ children and animals safe,” said Janie Camacho in her testimony to The Alliance for A Just Recovery Forum. “We like to do this. And we like to live here. But it is getting too expensive for us to stay.”
Like many Sonoma County workers, Janie is struggling with the cost of housing in the community that relies on the services that she helps provide. In our state, one-third of renter households are paying over 50% of their income on rent.
Our state’s Costa-Hawkins Rental Housing Act prevents strong rent control and makes it easy for Wall Street landlords to evict in order to rent or sell to people with higher incomes.
Janie says that it’s only a matter of time before she is forced out of her community, which would further deteriorate her quality of life. She treasures living only one mile from work and in the same apartment building as her son, daughter in law and two grandchildren.
SEIU members like Janie are speaking before city councils, county boards and community groups across the state, and we’re also making sure that cities are no longer limited by Costa Hawkins from using all of their power to address their community’s housing crisis.
This fall we’re urging all our members to vote Yes on Prop 10, the Affordable Housing Act, that will give local communities the power to adopt rent control necessary to address California’s housing affordability crisis by repealing the Costa-Hawkins Rental Housing Act. To find out more on the growing movement to making housing affordable for all Californians, visit www.housingnowca.org.