Chants of “Housing is a human right!” filled Manhattan’s Third Avenue as more than a hundred angry tenants came to New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s local office on Aug. 4.
They demanded an end to evictions and foreclosures. They want Cuomo, whom the state attorney general’s report has shown to be a sexual predator, to resign.
Cuomo’s Emergency Rental Assistance Program has been a fiasco. By the end of July only $1.2 million in ERAP money had been distributed out of the $2.7 billion in state and federal funds set aside for the program.
That’s less than one dollar spent out of every two thousand dollars that was supposed to be used to pay back rent. Hundreds of thousands of tenants and homeowners are facing being thrown in the street once federal and state eviction bans end.
State Sen. Jabari Brisport chaired the rally. Brisport has spoken at rallies for reparations at the African Burial Ground in lower Manhattan.
Brisport saluted the courage of Rep. Cori Bush, who staged a sit-in on the steps of the U.S. Capitol that forced President Biden to extend the ban on evictions.
Many community organizations came, including Churches United For Fair Housing (CHFFH); the Cooper Square Committee; Crown Heights Tenant Union; the Flatbush Tenant Coalition; Good Old Lower East Side; Make the Road while Walking; New York Communities for Change and Southside United HDFC-Los Sures, of Williamsburg. Everybody’s sick of Cuomo!
The landlords and the entire ruling class want to strip all protections from tenants and homeowners. They don’t care if millions are made homeless.
Today’s rally shows that a fightback must and will be made. Housing is a human right.
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