At Public Advocates, we believe that the displacement of individuals and families of color from their homes and neighborhoods is a barrier to fair housing that reflects structural racial inequality in our society. Lack of affordable housing, rising rents and evictions often displace families of color from neighborhoods of opportunity that offer long established networks and rich cultural institutions. New investment in low-income communities that could improve economic opportunity, schools, and neighborhood conditions can also result in gentrification that leads to displacement. We are working with community partners around the Bay Area and throughout the state to use fair housing law to advocate for “investment without displacement” and to advance protections for vulnerable tenants.
We are a member of the Protect Oakland Renters coalition that has proposed a local ballot measure for November to strengthen tenant protections in Oakland. Learn more about the ballot measure here and about our Oakland housing justice work.
In the heart of the Silicon Valley economy, lower income renters in San Mateo County are facing intense displacement pressures, including mass evictions, staggering rent increases, and record housing prices. We are partnering with Faith in Action, Urban Habitat, the Community Legal Services of East Palo Alto, and others to advocate for tenant protections and other anti-displacement measures.
Gentrification and displacement have threatened deeply-rooted communities in the Bay Area’s urban neighborhoods for decades. Now, communities in all corners of the region are facing that threat. Public Advocates works with groups throughout the Bay Area on local and regional campaigns to make investments in existing low-income communities more responsive to the needs of existing residents and to strengthen policies that protect these residents from displacement pressures. We also convene the 6 Wins Investment Without Displacement Network to knit together advocacy around the region and tackle the regional and state policies that fuel gentrification and displacement at the local level.
Throughout California, local organizations and coalitions are fighting for Investment Without Displacement rather than gentrification and displacement. Public Advocates co-convenes a network of local and state-level organizations working to develop a shared analysis of the problem and shared solutions. Our goal is to knit together local organizing and campaign work across many geographies to build power and tackle both local and state policies. These policies are encouraging profit-driven development in some low-income communities of color (especially near transit) and failing to protect these communities from displacement. We seek instead a vision of investment that meets the needs of existing residents and allows them to remain in place as their neighborhoods become more desirable and expensive.