FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 10/24/2014
Councilmember Sawant in Solidarity with Activists Rallying Today Against SHA’s ‘Stepping Forward’ Proposal
SEATTLE – Councilmember Kshama Sawant issued the following statement regarding today’s protest against the Seattle Housing Authority’s (SHA’s) "Stepping Forward" proposal. The protest is organized by Tenants United Against Stepping Forward, a group of tenants and housing justice activists who are bringing their struggle to City Hall. The proposal would increase rents for low-income residents by 430% over the next six years for a family living in a two bedroom house.
"I stand in solidarity will all those who are fighting to defend and expand affordable housing in this city, and I strongly support the demands being put forward by Tenants United Against Stepping Forward. These demands include scrapping Stepping Forward entirely, appointing tenant activists to the Mayor’s Housing Affordability and Livability Advisory Committee, and ensuring that there is a voice for tenants in the SHA Board of Commissioner’s appointment process.
"The tenants’ protests have already been effective. The City Council has sent a unanimous letter opposing Stepping Forward. Five of the seven SHA board members must be appointed by the Mayor and approved by the Council in the next six months. I urge the Mayor and Councilmembers to join me in signing a proclamation pledging to only appoint or confirm individuals who oppose Stepping Forward and who have a proven track record of housing advocacy for low-income people."
Today’s protest, organized by Tenants United Against Stepping Forward, will begin at 3 p.m. in Seattle City Hall’s lobby at 600 4th Avenue, Seattle, WA 98104.