Protecting And Creating Affordable Housing In Livable Neighborhoods
Skyrocketing rents, harassment, and displacement threaten countless New Yorkers. We need new units, but we can’t just build our way out. We must do everything we can to strengthen tenant protections, preserve every affordable unit, require more and deeper affordability, and meet our shared responsibility for housing homeless New Yorkers. And we must plan together – as a city, and as communities – for a future of truly livable, inclusive neighborhoods.
Key Campaign #6: Invest in Public housing
In March 2017, President Trump announced massive cuts in federal funding for the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA), which houses over 400,000 residents. As it is, our public housing stock is in need of deep repairs, suffering from mold, leaks, and broken elevators. The minimum of $75 million in cuts will be devastating to our city's most vulnerable residents, and it is imperative that we support them. We believe every resident deserves and decent housing. We advocate that the City:
- Fully Fund New York City Housing Authority - With over 400,000 low-income New Yorkers living in more than 178,000 NYCHA units, many of which have fallen into disrepair for years, the City government should fully fund $17 billion capital deficit and whatever Federal and State shortfalls may come until every unit of public housing is livable. The City should commit the Battery Park Authority's surplus of $40 million a year for 10 years and invest $1 billion in general per year in order to reduce NYCHA's $17 billion capital deficit.
- Prevent Privatization of Public Housing - NYCHA land designated for affordable housing (infill) must not be used to build any luxury housing and must never be sold.
Key Campaign #7: Permanently Affordable Housing
Affordable housing remains one of the foremost challenges in New York City. New York City's housing crisis has exponentially worsened in recent years. At an increasingly rapid pace, New York City is losing more and more affordable housing units to rising demand, rent destabilization, and predatory landlord harassment. We advocate for:
- Required Affordability in ALL New Developments - Require affordable units in ALL new multifamily development event where a building is not granted density increases or tax breaks.
- Public Land for Affordable Housing - All available public land designated to include housing units should only be used for permanent, affordable housing, including deeply-affordable units.
- Community Land Trusts for Vacant and Abandoned Property - RFPs and City-ownered vacant land should prioritize non-profit and community land trusts over for-profit developers to ensure a mission-driven organization controls the underlying land, not a profit-motivated entity.
Key Campaign #8: Reduce Homelessness
Our City continues to face a crisis of homelessness, with over 60,000 homeless New Yorkers - including over 23,000 children - and many more in fear of losing their housing. Surprisingly to many, 70% of the DHS shelter population is comprised of homeless families. The City needs innovative solutions to assist those who are homeless to be placed in high-quality, purpose-built shelter that is safe and appropriate, accompanied by wrap-around services to help them to thrive. We propose focused support for the most vulnerable homeless populations, including families with children, runaway and homeless. youth, and those fleeing domestic violence:
- Permanent Rental Assistance for Homeless - Make the Living in Communities (LINC) rental assistance program permanent as long as families qualify for assistance, with the amount tied to inflation and cost of living increases.
- Prioritize Homeless for Public Housing - Connect the most vulnerable New Yorkers to stable affordable housing by prioritizing placement in NYCHA, Section 8, and HPD units.
- Community Connections - Improve intake, placement, and case management to help people use their support systems (family, schools, medical services, places of worship).
- Halt Homeless Hotels - Eliminate the use of hotels of homeless families with children: meanwhile, improve hotel conditions and guarantee regular access to social services.
- A Fair Start - Ensure runaway and homeless youth have support to exit homelessness through access to sufficient crisis beds, long-term housing, and rental assistance.
Rent Roll Back
Increasing rent has plagued low-income New Yorkers for years. We advocate that the Rent Guidelines Board enact a rent rollback for rent-stabilized tenants.
Fair Housing Plan
With the Trump Administration likely to roll back Federal fair housing requirements, the NYC Department of Housing Preservation, and Development should be required to develop and implement a "Fair Housing Plan" to ensure fair inclusion of affordable housing units - at diverse incomes, for the full range of family sizes, and for vulnerable populations such as seniors, people with disabilities, etc. - in neighborhoods across the city.
Citywide Certificate of No Harassment
Tenants should be protected from harassment by requiring landlords to prove that no tenants were harassed, before the City grants permission to demolish or alter a residential building.