Housing For all
Ensure everyone in San Jose has a place to live.
In order to both respond to the immediate needs of those going through a housing crisis and to build up a ground up movement of those targeted by the economic forces that drive displacement — we are starting a Housing Participatory Defense. While building this approach, we are also exploring and joining others in supporting strategies that have proven to be effective in other locales — namely community land trusts, holding developers accountable, and impact litigation. We will also remove the criminal activity provision of the tenant protection ordinance. Housing is a human right and housing justice movements must be led by those not in control of their own housing.
As we start the year:
Despite tremendous community outrage, the City Council sold off a significant amount of public land to Google towards the end of 2018. This marks only one stage of a longer process where intervention can take place, but it also elevated the conversation around who can afford to live in San Jose as economically exclusionary policies dictate the city’s actions. San Jose continues to lead the nation in cost of living index markers, and the city has doubled down in this trend in its recent commitment to Google. We need to move away from housing and land use policies dictated by profits to prioritizing the most people.
Exodus from the Jungle, Silicon Valley De-Bug
San Jose and county look for nonprofit to run legal encampment, Destination Home
CAMPAIGN STATUS: WE Will Continue into 2017
Although we have won incremental housing built, it has not been enough to secure housing for all. Though Evan's Lane is now providing SRO living for some experiencing homelessness, it has not met the ned of the more then 2,000 people living in the street in San Jose. In 2017, we are continuing our City and County efforts to provide safe, secure, and sanitary environments for all in or region.
TIMELINE AND STATUS:
August 2014: Advocates rally to prevent the closing of “The Jungle”, a homeless encampment thought to be populated by, conservatively, more than 380 people.
August-December 2014: Advocates lobby City of San Jose to stave off closing of The Jungle. City refuses to reconsider, opting instead to make the incremental effort of providing just 200 housing subsidies to various contractors, in order to save face come the December 4th closing.
December 4, 2016: After three straight days of continuous rain, the City of San Jose in conjunction with SJPD and the Santa Clara Valley Water District begin dismantling The Jungle; a destruction and displacement of people and property.
February 2015: The Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors unanimously vote to form a County Task Force charged with focusing on solutions to the immediate housing needs of the more than 7,000 homeless families and individuals across Santa Clara County.
April-November 2015: The “Housing” Task Force meet monthly to explore the myriad of issues facing people experiencing homelessness. From the agencies that provide services to this vulnerable community to the government institutions that initiate and monitor these programs: from advocates and people experiencing homelessness themselves, many voices are present and solutions are from all sides are explored.
October 2015: The Housing Task Force agrees on a list of nine recommendations to be forwarded to the SCC Board of Supervisors for its’ approval. Among them is a recommendation to create “Temporary and Permanent Housing Programs Using Unconventional Facilities and Structures”. This vague terminology leads many to assume that “sanctioned campgrounds” are included in this recommendation.
November 2015-January 2016: Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors and San Jose City Council resolve to work together on many of the resolutions approved by the Board of Supervisors, including “Temporary and Permanent Housing Programs Using Unconventional Facilities and Structures”
January 2016: City of San Jose moves forward with plans to develop City owned site on Evans Lane. This project would place modular-type structures with 6-7 Single Room Occupancy modeled bedrooms. This project would accommodate 102 people. Advocates feel that while this concept is worthwhile, it is still incremental and still continue to push local government for more development likes these and sanctioned campsites.
August 2016: Amid much community resistance, San Jose City Council approve the Evans Lane project by a vote of 8-3. Advocates feel that while this concept is worthwhile, it is still incremental and still continue to push local government for more developments likes these and sanctioned campsites as well.