Tell Your Story. Win Tenant Protections in Oakland


Español sique

Allies and Supporters -

Thousands of Oakland's tenants are being intimidated by their landlords, harassed, or neglected in the landlords attempts to push them out.  We have worked with Council member Dan Kalb to draft an ordinance that will stop this behavior and fine landlords that intimidate or threaten tenants, and we need your support to get the council...

Read more: Tell Your Story. Win Tenant Protections in Oakland

CJJC Helps Tenants Defend N. Oakland Home

MustafaAmyActionSept2014CJJC rolled 20 strong with members and community supporters early this morning  to demand that landlord's John Van Eyck, Caryl Esteves, and Alfred Wong stop the evictions & harassment of our members Mustafa Solomon and Amy Ornoski in North Oakland.

MustafaAmyActionSept2014The tenants -- who live in two separate units on the same property -- have had to deal with such issues...

Read more: CJJC Helps Tenants Defend N. Oakland Home

NYTimes: Evictions Soar in Hot Market; Renters Suffer

"The rental shortage has made the most vulnerable tenants susceptible to eviction. “So many of our clients are people of color, people with disabilities, people who have suffered extreme health crises or a long-term chronic illness,” said Christine Donahoe, a staff attorney with Legal Action of Wisconsin. "

MILWAUKEE — Just after 7 a.m., sheriff’s deputies knocked...

Read more: NYTimes: Evictions Soar in Hot Market; Renters Suffer

Changes to Rent Adjustment Program Ordinance & Regulations

As of August 1, there are new regulations around rent increases for capital improvements.

RentAdjustmentProgram_oakland080114The following is a brief summary of the recent amendments to the Rent Adjustment Ordinance and the Rent Adjustment Program Regulations, and is not intended to be a complete description or a substitute for the laws themselves.

For authoritative materials, please consult the text of...

Read more: Changes to Rent Adjustment Program Ordinance & Regulations

$10K in 5 Days. 40,000 Thank You’s

10Kin5 campaignImage by Josh Warren White, Design Action Collective

Over the course of just five days, 500 supporters came forward to support a Bay Area that puts people first.
Thanks to your collective generosity, we've raised $40,595, exceeding our goal by $30,000+. A BIG thank you to each and every one of you.

Your support will help to:

¥    Get thousands to the polls...

Read more: $10K in 5 Days. 40,000 Thank You’s

San Francisco's Housing Crisis in Numbers

Data on the Housing Crisis in SF:
—From the Anti-Eviction Mapping Project

No-Fault Evictions:

•    The number of evictions in 2013 has surpassed evictions in 2006, the height of the real estate bubble. Total no-fault evictions are up 17% compared to 2006.
•    Between 2012 and 2013 evictions have increased by 115%
•    Ellis Act use went up 175% between 2012...

Read more: San Francisco's Housing Crisis in Numbers

Stop the Flip: Proposed Anti-Speculation Measure

StoptheFlipScores of community members, tenants and several lawmakers including SF Supervisors John Avalos, David Campos, Jane Kim and Eric Mar introduced a proposed measure that would curb real estate flipping.

The SF Anti-Displacement Coalition of which Causa Justa :: Just Cause is a member in a "Stop the Flip" action on the steps of SF City Hall, announced that the...

Read more: Stop the Flip: Proposed Anti-Speculation Measure

West Oakland Specific Plan is NO Plan For Us






The West Oakland Specific Plan (W.O.S.P.) is a zoning plan that is an example of development WITH displacement. It makes no effort to mitigate the impacts of gentrification and instead opens up the neighborhood even more for investment opportunities. There are even parts of the plan that specifically state that displacement will occur and that West...

Read more: West Oakland Specific Plan is NO Plan For Us

SF Due Process For All Ordinance is strengthened — SF Ends All Unconstitutional ICE Holds

San Francisco Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi announced yesterday (May 29) that the county jail would  stop responding to unconstitutional ICE hold requests altogether. His announcement comes in the wake of a major federal court decision that has spurred more than 70 counties in several states to completely end the unconstitutional practice of holding immigrants in jail for extra time solely for...

Read more: SF Due Process For All Ordinance is strengthened — SF Ends All Unconstitutional ICE Holds

The battle of 16th and Mission: Inside the campaign to “clean up” the plaza and build luxury housing

By Julia Carrie Wong/48 Hills

MARCH 18, 2014 — Laura Guzman, the director of  homeless services for Mission Neighborhood Health Center, had the question that was on everybody’s mind at a recent protest at the 16th and Mission BART plaza. “Who,” she asked, “is Clean up the Plaza?”

More than 100 San Franciscans, including members of Mission-based organizations like Causa...

Read more: The battle of 16th and Mission: Inside the campaign to “clean up” the plaza and build luxury housing

Victory at SRO Hotel in the Mission District

The Grand Southern Hotel has some of the worst conditions out of all of the SRO (Single Room Occupancy) hotels in the Mission district. The hotel is home to many immigrant families with children. Tenants say they have been dealing with constant harassment by manager Luis Rivera and landlord Musa Salem and his family.

Working alongside the Mission SRO Collaborative (MSROC) we invited Supervisor David Campos to visit the hotel with former SF Supervisor and current director of Housing, Opportunity, Partnerships & Engagement (HOPE) Bevan Dufty. “They saw firsthand how the manager was drunk on the job and the horrible conditions of the hotel. They went door to door and heard the concerns of the tenants,” says Sanyika Bryant, CJJC Tenant Rights Organizer.

A few weeks ago Supervisor Campos called a meeting with the tenants, landlord and manager. The manager agreed to all but one of the procedural and repair demands of the tenants, thanks to our collective organizing and the pressure of Supervisor Campos — who took a hard stand against the landlord and the manager.  

Here is all that we won:
•    An end to the collection of late fees (as these aren't in any of the tenants' leases)
•    A written complaint process
•    Standardized receipts
•    Repairs to the carpets in several of the rooms
•    The removal of signs that make children feel unwelcomed in the building
•    One family got a significant rent reduction because the landlord had given them a higher rent based off of the size of their family, but their room was the same size as other rooms
•    Repairs to the water heating system
•    Monthly pest control

The fight isn't over and we're going to be monitoring the implementation of the new policies, but we just wanted to let you know the good news.

Alameda County Halts ICE Holds

Immig_stopdeportationsThe backlash against the draconian and inhumane administration of disastrous federal deportation policies is growing.

In a complete turnaround, Alameda County Sheriff Gregory Ahern announced last week (May 21) that he would stop holding people in jail for extra time under unconstitutional and unjust immigration "hold" requests. 

Before the announcement, any immigrant in Alameda County could be apprehended, held, and ultimately turned over to ICE authorities for deportation. Every year, ICE makes approximately 1,000 requests to Santa Rita jail in Alameda County to hand over immigrants arrested on other charges but suspected of being undocumented. "Now we won't be honoring any of them," Sheriff Ahern told the San Jose Mercury, adding "We're not going to be honoring the ICE holds unless they're backed by the order of a judge."

The news follows a recent major federal court decision which has spurred parallel reactions from sheriffs in Monterey, Sonoma, Santa Cruz, San Bernardino and Riverside counties. In early May Contra Costa County Sheriff  David Livingston announced a similar decision.

These counties join Santa Clara and San Francisco in pushing back on ICE holds through local laws, and build upon the protections of California's TRUST Act, a state law which placed limits on sheriffs’ assent to ICE hold requests while warning that each hold risks violating the US Constitution. Sheriff Ahern’s announcement builds on his January memorandum limiting when Alameda County would acquiescence to ICE hold requests. 

"When we fight, we win! It is a victory for Immigrant communities and the values of due process and equality,” says Cinthya Muñoz Ramos, Co-Chair of ACUDIR (Alameda County United In Defense of Immigrant Rights) and CJJC Regional Lead Organizer, Immigrant Rights.

“For years, Alameda County families have organized, raised their voices and demanded an end to immigration holds. The holds that have torn apart families, wasted local resources, and threatened the most fundamental principles of the justice system. In February, after much work with community members, the Sheriff took an important step toward ending this injustice by enacting a strong policy to implement the TRUST Act.”  #NiUnaMas #Not1More

There's room for a $15 minimum wage in S.F.'s new economy

Vanessa Moses and Josué Arguelles 
Published in SF Gate, Tuesday, May 6, 2014

It's been 10 years since San Francisco raised its minimum wage to the highest in the country. Today, we find ourselves in a new economy. Yet day laborers, domestic workers and restaurant and retail workers face the same struggles as in 2004. Despite San Francisco's affluence, workers are falling behind when it comes to affording health care, rent, tuition and basic living expenses, and too many can no longer afford to live here.

With our economy increasingly dominated by real estate and tech sectors, we are now the city with the fastest-growing gap between rich and poor. The current proposal to increase the city's minimum wage put forward by labor and community groups is one part of a larger solution to address the crisis in our communities of increasing income inequality and rampant displacement.
Some would argue that a move to $15 an hour is too fast or too high, that it would result in businesses closing and workers being laid off. But history proves otherwise.

In the decade since the last increase, we have seen growth in the San Francisco economy and no negative impact on employment, with increases in worker productivity and reduced turnover. This is why a broad coalition, formed of the same communities who worked to raise the minimum wage 10 years ago, have introduced a measure to increase the minimum wage to $15 an hour, phased in over two years for large employers and three years for small and medium employers, alongside efforts to stop real estate speculation, raise labor standards for large corporate employers and support small businesses.

As the minimum-wage debate gains momentum in San Francisco, we find the voices of those most affected missing: workers.

Take Gui Fang, who works three part-time jobs, including elder care and janitorial work. She struggles to pay her rent and other bills, even though she lives in a tiny, one-room SRO with a shared kitchen. "My rent is going up in July. With the cost of living rising, how can people afford to live in San Francisco?" she asks.

Or a man named Raymundo Gutierrez, who works seven days a week at two above-minimum wage jobs, lives in a one-bedroom apartment he shares with three others, and still struggles to make ends meet with rising rent and cost of living. "It's not just about securing my future, but those of my co-workers and family," he says.

A move to raise the minimum wage is not only good for the economy, it's the moral thing to do. It's about raising the standards for workers and creating a dignified wage. It's about lifting our parents, students and immigrant workers out of poverty. It's about aligning with historic laws, such as paid sick days and paid health care, and letting the nation know that San Francisco is not behind, but leading the way in upholding dignity and respect for workers.

San Francisco's economic success should be measured by how it addresses the needs of the workers...

Read more: There's room for a $15 minimum wage in S.F.'s new economy

Community Education Forum on Market-Rate Monster Development Proposed for SF 16th St. BART Plaza


Demands Escalate to Stop Current Project Proposal and for a Safe and Vibrant Plaza that Serves Existing Community

WHAT:  “We Cannot Afford This In Our Neighborhood//No Podemos Permitir Esto en Nuestra Comunidad”:  Multi-Lingual community forum at the Victoria Theater regarding the proposed development of 350 market-rate units at 16th St. Bart Plaza. Organized by Plaza 16 Coalition.
WHEN: Thursday May 15th, 6:00-8:00pm
WHERE: Victoria Theater, 2961 Capp St. x 16th St.  San Francisco.

(photo by Andy Blue)

This event marks the first community organized discussion on the proposed monster project and follows previous action by the coalition opposing the development on February 1, 2014.

The Forum is organized and facilitated by the Plaza 16 Coalicion/Coalition, a broad and diverse coalition of community organizations, merchants, and neighbors demanding a halt to the current proposal and all market-rate developments in the Mission until housing for the poor and working class is fully restored and practices of community based planning for people not profit are implemented.

The La Plaza 16 Coalición/ The Plaza 16 Coalition has come together to advocate for the 1979 Mission Street site to be used for affordable housing. Our coalition builds on the decades of planning and organizing in the Mission that created Plan Popular and won affordable housing for our communities.

The Coalition does not believe the currently proposed development project will primarily serve the needs of the existing community and thus opposes the development until it is tailored to meet the need for truly affordable housing in the neighborhood. Member organizations include: CARECEN, Causa Justa :: Just Cause, Dolores Street Community Services, Eviction Mapping Project, Housing Rights Committee, Latino Democratic Club, Mission Economic Development Agency, Mission Neighborhood Resource Center, and PODER.

Read more here

Check out  FB event HERE!

For more info on the development check out:

Meanwhile, read CJJCs report which examines the effects of gentrification and displacement in San Francisco and Oakland neighborhoods, and which calls for urgent housing policy changes.

As tenants in both San Francisco and Oakland reel under the highest rents in the nation, new development and investment (such as this proposed 16th St. Bart Plaza monster development)  is causing tremendous market pressures destabilizing everything from housing to health to political power.

"Gentrification is the process of social, cultural, and economic transformation that is taking place in many centrally located urban neighborhoods which have experienced historic disinvestment. It involves significant increases in rental and for-sale housing costs, the in-migration of higher-income, white, and college-educated residents and the out-migration of longtime residents, many of whom may be renters, low-income residents, and people of color." —Development Without Displacement

# # #
Causa Justa :: Just Cause is a multi-racial grass roots housing and immigrant rights organization building community leadership to achieve justice for low-income San Francisco and Oakland residents. We have offices on both sides of the Bay.

Friend us on Facebook. Follow us on Twitter at causajusta1   WHY? Because #housingisahumanright #Plazasixteen