Aug. 4 — The threat of heavy rain on account of tropical storm Isaias didn’t stop over a hundred people from rallying in front of Brooklyn’s civil court this morning at 141 Livingston Street.
People started to gather before 8:30 a.m. The protestors, many of whom were from the Crown Heights Tenants Union, were determined to stop the evictions that are coming.
Federal and state moratoriums on evictions are expiring. Millions of people across the country, including hundreds of thousands in Brooklyn, N.Y., are in danger of being homeless.
There’s nothing civil about the Livingston Street eviction mill. Unlike criminal courts, tenants don’t have to be provided with an attorney while landlords can always afford a legal mouthpiece. What sort of equal justice is that?
Longtime tenant activist Marcela Mitaynes pointed out that 14 judges keep busy by kicking families out of their home. Only one of them hears complaints about landlords whose buildings are often iceboxes in the winter and ovens in the summer, with paint peeling and cockroaches the year round.
Mitaynes is now running for the state assembly from the 51st district in Brooklyn’s Sunset Park neighborhood.
A speakout was held on Livingston. Furniture was put on the sidewalk to show how ugly and vicious an eviction looks.
People then took to the streets to march to the New York Supreme Court at 320 Jay Street. Along the way, a bus operator, a member of Transit Workers Union local 100, honked a horn in support.
Jenny Wong led chants in front of the family court’s entrance despite a half-dozen hovering police. After picketing there, the marchers went back to the civil court. Michael Hollinsworth raised the necessity of organizing rapid response teams to halt evictions.
More actions will be held there on Aug. 5 and 6. Protests are scheduled throughout New York City.
The power of the people will stop evictions and foreclosures!
SLL photos: Stephen Millies