Dozens of families that have received threats of rent hikes, evictions, and harassment plan to urge City Council to vote yes to prevent further homelessness from surging in the area
ANTIOCH – Following several actions this last month led by many of the hundreds of tenants living in Antioch apartments owned by Levy Affiliated LLC that received rent increases between $200-$700/month threatening to displace them, Antioch city council will be voting on a rent stabilization ordinance on Tuesday, August 23. Dozens of renting families from across Antioch plan to speak out at the city council meeting to strongly urge city council members to:
- cap rent increases at 60% of CPI or 3%, whichever is less
- ensure affordable housing and specifically LIHTC buildings are covered
- implement the measure retroactively to January 2022
- include a rent board and tenant appeal process, and to
- immediately freeze rent to avoid retaliation by landlords
This City Council meeting follows the January 25, 2022, City Council meeting where the Antioch City Council voted in favor for City staff to begin drafting a Rent Stabilization, Tenant Anti-Harassment, and Just-Cause for Eviction Ordinances—all three which they have promised will be brought to a vote in a future meeting.
- WHAT: Renters and parents to speak out at Antioch City Council to urge them to pass a rent stabilization ordinance
- WHEN: Tuesday, August 23, 7:00pm
- WHERE: Antioch City Hall—200 H St. Antioch, CA 94509
- Zoom Link: https://www.antiochca.gov/speakers
ECRG member Dulce Franco, is a single mother who has lived with her 2 children and elderly mother at Casa Blanca for 11 years. Dulce recently received a 33% rent increase of $381. While the notice was rescinded for insufficient noticing, she is afraid of receiving another similar increase in the future. Dulce recently lost her job and does not have a way to move. She barely stays afloat with the current rent. Dulce and her neighbors are like a family. She is afraid to be separated from her support network. Dulce is also concerned with significant habitability violations including mold, bugs, unrepaired floors and broken bathtub. Without rent control, Dulce and her family are at risk of another extreme rent increase and would have to move out of the area, separating her kids from their friends and their community at Casa Blanca.
ECRG member Rocheall Pierre is an Antioch resident and single mother who pays $1800 for a 1 bedroom apartment in a corporate owned building. Rocheall works 2 jobs to pay the rent and often has to make tough choices between paying the rent, putting gas in her car or buying food and clothes for her son. Rocheall has been displaced before and knows what it is to be homeless. She lives in constant fear of being evicted and displaced again as a result of unaffordable rents. Rocheall believes that citywide rent control will help her and other families like her be more secure in Antioch.
ACCE-Contra Costa member Della Currie is one of the many tenants impacted by negligence and high rent increases in Delta Pines. Three months ago Della, her fiancé and three children were victims of a fire in their apartment building which destroyed many of her belongings in their 2-bedroom apartment. As a result, management down-sized Della’s five-person family to a 1-bedroom apartment and is now giving her a $300 rent increase to pay for her smaller unit. Della claims her current apartment is in terrible condition with mold, and that the outside of the apartment building have open asbestos which children can access.
The East County Regional Group’s recent housing assessment “Antioch CHANGE: A Community Housing Assessment of Needs, Gaps and Equity in Antioch, California” on rising rents, evictions, and harassment concerns in Antioch, collected the housing needs and concerns of over 1,000 Antioch renters between April 2021 and June 2021. The assessment found that on average respondents paid 63 percent of their monthly income on rent, leaving little for food, medicine, childcare, and other basic necessities. The report shows that the biggest concern of Antioch renters is housing affordability. Low-income residents of color and families with young children are most housing insecure, reporting higher rent burden, fears of displacement, and habitability concerns. Among renters with young children, 83 percent worried about rent increases and 75 percent worried about being able to pay the rent at all. The report also highlights that Antioch residents support local housing policies such as rent control and just cause for evictions with at least 86% of respondents in support of both.
The city of Antioch has been the ground for the largest number of evictions within the Bay Area; a March 2021 KQED investigative report found Antioch’s eviction rate to be 207.2 per 100,000 renter households, nearly double that of Richmond and approximately 50 times the rate of Oakland. Moreover, 60 percent of Antioch renters, who make up 40% of all Antioch residents, report paying more than 30 percent of their income on rent in 2021. According to a recent homelessness numbers assessment Contra Costa saw the biggest rise in homelessness in the past four years where homelessness numbers jumped by 35 percent between 2019 and 2022.
East County Regional Group is a volunteer, parent advocacy group working to make East Contra Costa healthier, safer, and more equitable for young children and families. The ECRG is sponsored by First 5 Contra Costa’s Community Engagement and Advocacy Program.
First 5 Contra Costa helps young children start school healthy, nurtured and ready to learn by investing in services and activities focused on children during their first five years—the most important time in children’s development.
The Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment (ACCE) Action is a grassroots, member-led, statewide community organization working with more than 16,000 members across California. ACCE is dedicated to raising the voices of everyday Californians, neighborhood by neighborhood, to fight for the policies and programs we need to improve our communities and create a brighter future.
Monument Impact is a community-based nonprofit dedicated to building skills, resources and power within immigrant, refugee and low-income communities in Concord. Located in the Monument Corridor, one of the most densely populated communities in the Bay Area, and serving immigrants in Concord and East Contra Costa, community members are engaged in identifying solutions to the challenges and barriers they face to achieving economic prosperity. Its integrated programs focus on building workforce skills; promoting mental and physical health; and ensuring the community’s voice is heard on critical local issues impacting local immigrant families.