The Renter Nation Speaks: City Council Hearing (Media Advisory)

THE RENTER NATION SPEAKS: Pain for the Many, Profit for the Few

For Monday, October 20, 2014

For Immediate Release Contact:
Darnell Johnson (617) 858-6116, [email protected]
Mike Leyba (617) 934-8549, [email protected]

WHAT:  Public Hearing & Testimony for Boston City Council

WHO: City Life / Vida Urbana, Chinese Progressive Association and Right to the City Boston

WHERE: Boston City Council Chambers, City Hall

WHEN: Monday October 20, 2014 at 4:00 PM

WHY: There is a gentrification and affordability crisis in cities across America.  Corporate landlords backed by greedy investors and dollar-chasing developers building only for the luxury market continue to displace and destabilize our neighborhoods.

Housing prices have risen as private investors continue to buy up rental properties in the wake of the foreclosure crisis. On October 20th, renters, homeowners, small businesses, S8 tenants, condo owners and people in need of housing will mark the 20th anniversary of rent deregulation in MA, and testify before the Boston City Council about the impacts of displacement and the need for neighborhood preservation and stable affordable housing.

Boston is the most rapidly gentrifying city in America.   In the wake of Mayor Walsh’s recently released municipal housing plan, Boston tenants and community activists will testify about the citywide affordable housing crisis and highlight issues of luxury development at the city's center and the influx of a new urban elite which is displacing working class residents in neighborhoods like Chinatown and East Boston.

  • Corporate landlords and investors have caused a surge of residential housing conversion causing displacement and community instability in the interest of making profit.

  • Between 2006 and 2012, there have been over 4,500 families that have been foreclosed just in the City of Boston. The vast majority of these families have been displaced and pushed into the rental market.

  • Luxury development in our city center and waterfront is displacing tenants and turning working class neighborhoods into playgrounds of the wealthy elite.

  • Thousands of residents and millions of our tax dollars work to improve our neighborhoods; then those who did the work get forced out.

  • 20 years ago this November, we lost affordable housing and tenant protections, giving way to a system of allowing development to drive displacement.

  • It is imperative that the City of Boston continue to develop healthy communities and preserve the populations and cultures of neighborhoods against forced displacement.