San Francisco residents demand resources to address housing crisis

By Sana Saleem : 48hills – excerpt

‘Let’s get in and march up there and tell the budget committee what we want done.’

Coalitions of community, racial and economic justice, and housing groups including Jobs with Justice, the Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment, Mission Economic Development Agency, and Mission SRO Collaborative held a protest outside City Hall today to call for adequate funding to address the affordable housing crisis in San Francisco.

“When Twitter and other major technology corporations demanded tax breaks to stay in our city, the city had no problem giving them a hand-out,” said Julien Ball of Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment. “But when we want real funding to solve the housing crisis the tech boom helped cause, our calls for change and real investment in stopping the displacement crisis keeps falling on deaf ears. It’s time we had a real voice for them to pay their fair share.”

The small group gathered at the steps of City Hall to call for resources to address the housing crisis. The rally comes as the Board of Supervisors debate the city budget, which community leaders contend will not adequately address the crisis, despite repeated calls for resources to keep people in their homes and build new affordable housing…

In a press statement about the protest, advocates shared their concern over inaction in the face of rising evictions and homelessness “Instead of allowing communities a greater voice to address the crisis, win protections and adequate funding, recently some San Francisco city officials and Governor Jerry Brown have been influenced by real estate and major technology corporations to allow developers greater ability to build more market-rate units with even less public input through the local ‘Affordable Housing Bonus Program‘ and the state’s “by-right” proposal.  If passed, both would further quiet the voices of those mose impacted by the crisis – the city and state’s poor to working class communities of color.”

Community groups and her district residents will be calling on Land Use Committee Chair Malia Cohen to support more investment in affordable housing and greater community input and impact analysis on development deals as well as supporting Supervisor Peskin’s resolution to address “By-right” and his alternative “densit done right” plan, which would prevent the demolition of existing affordable housing and community-serving businesses and would allow increased density only for truly affordable units... (more)

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