ACER and Asamblea had an amazing and successful turn out for our Regional Housing Forum. Over 30 people attended, including community members, elected city officials and more. There were many people in support of addressing housing inequities in the Brooklyns, and this forum is just a stepping stone to bigger changes that are going to happen in the Northwest suburbs.
During the forum, we had residents from Brooklyn Park, Brooklyn Center, and Lowry Grove give testimonies of their current struggles concerning housing inequities. Residents listed off the unsafe and unhealthy environment of their current living space, and how rent was increasing every year – yet no repairs or improvement was to be seen on the property or in the units. Also, residents spoke about their unfair and unjust treatment stemming from property owners and staff. The most prominent themes of the night coming from the residents were their need to stay in the communities they are currently in, and to have property managers be accountable for making sure their living space is in a healthy and dignified state.
For the last portion of the forum, each table had discussion questions that relate to the testimonies given, and what sort of actions are needed to be done to properly address the housing inequities in our community.
Table Discussion Questions
- What is your idea of fair housing?
- Are there people in your neighborhood that you identify with? Are the people in your neighborhood segregated? What characteristics define the segregation?
- Have you experienced housing discrimination? What type of discrimination occurred? And by whom?
- What things do you think should be done to best improve the living condition or provide more opportunity for you and your neighbors to improve their lives?
We want to thank all those who attended and contributed to the various conversations during the forum. We couldn’t have done this without the support of our residents, who bravely gave their testimonies. This is only one step that we as a community are taking, to ensure that the housing inequities in the Northwest suburbs are being addressed.