THE SONOMA COUNTY TENANTS UNION
recognizes safe, secure, and affordable housing as a basic human right that should be enjoyed by all people as a means of enriching our community and providing economic stability for poor and working people. We envision a future where housing is community-driven and collectively owned, capitalists cannot profit from the housing of low-income and vulnerable people, and tenants unions are part of a larger, intersectional, collective fight against all systems
WHY DO WE NEED A TENANTS UNION?
Because the rent is too damn high!
According to Rent Cafe, the average rent for a 2-bedroom apartment in Santa Rosa is $1916/month. A person’s wage would need to be nearly three times the minimum wage to afford to rent here. We are paying too much of our income in rent!
Because tenants are disproportionately bearing the brunt of the COVID-19 pandemic—in terms of infection rates, financial impacts, and a looming threat of eviction.
Workers in the service industry, farmworkers, domestic workers, healthcare workers and so many more cannot stay home during the pandemic.
There is more than $8 million of unpaid rental debt PER MONTH in Sonoma County alone.
11,400 households in Sonoma County are at risk of eviction once eviction protections expire.
We fight for legislation to abolish debt, provide financial support to tenants, and to provide adequate PPE and paid sick leave during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Because tenants face discrimination and harassment.
Undocumented tenants, people of color, and LGBTQI+ people face significantly higher rates of discrimination and harassment in their housing.
Because laws that protect tenants are often complex and riddled with loopholes.
We support tenants in knowing their rights and advocating for themselves through our tenant
Because new construction and new development often does not meet the needs of
low- and very low-income people.
We advocate for housing development and housing investment that is community-owned and run and can remain affordable for generations to come. We envision development that does not drive up prices, does not profit already wealthy corporations, does not accelerate gentrification, and does not displace communities already at the margins.
BECOME A MEMBER!
More Members = More Power
Strength in numbers – the more people we've got behind us, the more political power we hold.
With enough members paying dues, we will be able to set up a general fund to provide tenants with financial assistance for certain expenses.
Solidarity and Connectedness
Share your story, hear other people's stories, make connections, share resources, and feel empowered by collective action.
Voting Rights and Committee Work
Regular members have voting rights and can be on committees, so they have the power to shape the direction of the union and play an active role in fighting for tenants' rights and housing justice.