Seattle Claiming #RenterPower at City Hall for #RentersDayofAction
On the morning of Wednesday September 21st, our #RentersDayofAction demands were quick and simple, but never had a chance to be delivered verbally to Seattle City Council.
Citizens of Seattle were only half done voicing our needs at the Seattle City Council’s Affordable Housing, Neighborhoods & Finance Committee, when councilmember Tim Burgess called security to eject us, with the excuse that our public comment time was up.
Like the violence of displacement and evictions, in the ruckus our people were pushed, shoved, arm locked and punched in the back to comply to leave by Seattle City Hall security. We pushed back and got back in, but eventually it became a chase around City Hall. Maybe, because just Monday 09/19 there was an unscheduled shutdown of council chambers by our allies Black Lives Matter in protest of Block the Bunker new $160M police precinct and $210M Juvenile Jail, both most expensive in nation, which we the public and officials argue could pay for thousands of homes.
We proceeded to go to the streets where we rallied, and went back to occupy City Hall Plaza. Our day was not so fun but the recommendations of the housing task force were presented to the mayor today and included just cause eviction, rental inspection, relocation assistance and anti discrimination for source of income and criminal backgrounds.
MORE SEATTLE RENTERS DAY OF ACTION
We were at Seattle City Hall as groups and communities representing Seattle as part of the Homes For All Renters Day of Action for Dignity and Respect nationwide . 50 cities and tens of thousands taking action for we are claiming our Renter Power and have demands of an affordable and livable Seattle for all.
Our demands to Seattle City Council:
We are proud to be renters, together we have immense power, and we need more from YOU our city leaders to fix Seattle’s #RenterStateofEmergency.
We are tired of living in fear. Safe, secure, healthy housing is a human RIGHT. People of color, seniors, workers, disabled folks and LGBTQ folks are disproportionately hurt by this crisis. These steep rent increases are VIOLENT – housing loss is severe trauma.
The majority of housing in Seattle is rental units but we have thousands of people without shelter and more at risk of losing their homes as rents keep rising – how are you protecting us?
We need 1,000 units of affordable, city-owned rental housing – Block the Bunker $160M police precinct and use the funds to keep renters safely housed!
We need a livable rent and we need you to lead the charge – Seattle renters can’t afford to wait for Olympia lawmakers – we’ll already have been forced out. Seattle rents are growing FOUR TIMES FASTER than the national average.
We demand community control over land and housing – we know what’s best for our communities!
We demand a freeze on all unjust evictions and need Seattle to lead the way on a National Rent Freeze.