In the absence of specific data, the housing organization Open New York has launched a project asking everyday residents to crowdsource the locations of vacant apartments—rent-stabilized and unregulated units alike—to paint a more complete picture.
Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg made good on his campaign pledge to create an investigative unit tasked with cracking down on landlords who harass tenants, developers that cheat government subsidy programs and speculators who swipe deeds from small property owners.
The dearth of affordable housing across the city—and the nation—should prompt Congress to increase rental assistance programs and supercharge the National Housing Trust Fund, Sarah Saadian of the National Low-Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC) told WBAI’s City Watch. The fund sends money to states to develop homes for extremely low-income Americans.
The Stable Families Act builds off the massive pot of money that Congress sent to states and local governments to cover rent arrears for tenants who could not make payments as a result of the pandemic
De Blasio told City Limits that he wants to see New York City-style right-to-shelter laws for people experiencing homelessness in all cities, rent regulation across the country and a path to citizenship for 12 million immigrants living in the United States without authorization.
Non-profit developers and tenants rights advocates have also been sounding the alarm on the need to create more income-restricted apartments across the five boroughs and to keep existing renters stably housed, especially in communities of color.
Brooklyn Councilmember Chi Ossé wants to commit 1 percent of New York City’s budget to the arts sector, which shed more than 208,000 jobs during the early months of the pandemic.
“Using police to remove the homeless off the subways, we have to be very careful about that,” Councilmember Diana Ayala said in an interview on WBAI’s City Watch. “Most of these people are not hurting anyone.They’re just looking for a warm place to sleep at night.”
“The failure that we’re experiencing is the result of decades of disinvestment of mental health services,” Manhattan Councilmember Erik Bottcher, who represents Greenwich Village, Chelsea and Hell’s Kitchen, said during an appearance on WBAI’s City Watch this week.
“Access means a lot of different things, and language access is a huge part of it,” Councilmember Linda Lee, who now chairs the committee on mental health, told WBAI’s City Watch.