Series

Fight For Your (Tenant) Rights

Link in Bio with Jenny and Alejandro
Pamela Agustin, director of Eastside Leads, educates tenants on their rights as rent prices surge.
Show transcript
00:00
So rent has been skyrocketing guys and there's a housing crisis all
00:05
over the country to help us know our rights as tenants.
00:09
We have Pamela Agustin director of East Side leads here with us
00:13
Hi, Pamela.
00:14
Hi, Jenny. Thank you for inviting me.
00:16
Thank you for coming.
00:18
Thank you. Thank you.
00:19
So we know rent has gone up 30% in the last
00:23
five years. Is it a good time to be renting
00:26
right now? Well,
00:28
Jenny, the reality is that renting is how majority of Californians
00:34
are housed today, especially here in L A county.
00:37
You know, the majority of renters,
00:38
we make up 60% of the renter population.
00:42
Yeah, and the issue is we have an affordable housing crisis
00:46
right? Where there's a lot of competition for,
00:51
for units, but also,
00:53
you know, low income tenants.
00:54
The what really like brings the culture,
00:57
especially here in the East Side,
00:59
you know, they're,
01:00
they're at risk of being displaced.
01:02
Yeah. Yeah, there's it's,
01:05
it's tough times right now,
01:06
tough times, everything is so expensive.
01:09
So what kind of power do tenants really have?
01:12
I think tenants united are stronger,
01:16
right? So what we in my organization is I leads,
01:19
we're a coalition of eight organizations we believe in no displacement.
01:23
We live to that vision by organizing with tenants,
01:26
we educate them about their rights,
01:29
specially during the pandemic,
01:30
tenant rights were changing.
01:32
So it's important that tenants first of all know their rights know
01:36
that nobody can evict them except a sheriff.
01:40
And you know that United talking amongst neighbors forming tenant associations is
01:46
how they can really win the goods and the goods is staying
01:50
in their long time neighborhoods.
01:52
And do you think things can get better?
01:54
Because I'm like right now,
01:55
I'm like, oh my God is like,
01:56
you know how they say,
01:57
they say, oh,
01:58
like the house prices are gonna go high and renting is only
02:01
gonna go higher. And I just wonder like are is there
02:04
light at the end of the tunnel?
02:05
Because right now I'm like,
02:07
you know, that's very real and that's what we hear
02:10
every day. with these side leads,
02:12
right? We take calls with tenants,
02:14
we meet, meet with tenants weekly and I think there is
02:17
a light at the end of the tunnel.
02:18
If tenants organize, if we talk to our neighbors,
02:23
if we come together,
02:24
first of all, if tenants get an eviction notice,
02:27
right? Or a new property owner,
02:30
people should know that just because your property changed owners,
02:34
they don't have to move.
02:36
The only way that a tenant can be evicted is if a
02:38
formal eviction has been filed in the L A county courts and
02:42
then that you've lost that case and then only the sheriff can
02:46
kick you out. So the light at the end of the
02:47
tunnel for me is we are united.
02:50
We are fighting back tenants if they hear right.
02:53
Especially you, Jenny,
02:54
you hear your friends,
02:55
your family. Hey,
02:56
I'm facing some challenges with my landlord or they're really harassing me
03:00
or I'm feeling threatened,
03:03
connect them to not just the salit but an autonomous Tenants Union
03:07
in the area. That's another way that I see a light
03:10
at the end of the tunnel.
03:11
That's good Unidos. And there you go.
03:16
And, and what do you think about rent control?
03:19
Isa elites? We've been pushing for a tenant bill of rights
03:23
throughout the pandemic. That's nine things that if those nine things
03:27
were in place in all 88 cities in the county,
03:31
people could really remain in their communities.
03:33
And rent control is top during the pandemic.
03:36
We actually saw a big surge of organizing communities like Pasadena
03:43
Pomona and we're, we're winning rent control and who were the
03:48
people that were leading those fights,
03:50
majority mujeres, immigrants,
03:53
low income tenants. So organizing really gets the goods.
03:56
Definitely, definitely. Where can we follow you at East
04:01
Side lead? Yeah.
04:02
So everybody can follow us at E side leads in Instagram
04:07
Facebook, tiktok.
04:10
Yeah. And obviously also our website is I leads.org and always
04:15
you know, we have actions,
04:16
people can get connected to the movement in different ways.
04:20
But you know,
04:21
actions are fun. So we'll see you in the streets.
04:24
So are there any national organizations you recommend?
04:28
Definitely right to the city alliance.
04:32
So right to the city is a move a national movement that
04:36
brings together organizations from throughout,
04:38
you know, the United States.
04:41
And it's the vision is exactly what it means right to the
04:45
city that tenants have a right to remain in their city,
04:48
that immigrants have a right to remain in their city.
04:51
And they've been, you know,
04:53
having convenings, they recently had one in New Orleans.
04:57
And yeah, the housing justice movement,
04:59
the tenant rights movement came together and,
05:02
you know, got to learn from each other's fights because honestly
05:06
Jenny fights are local,
05:09
but then we learn from each other,
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we learn best practices,
05:12
we learn what worked and then we try to apply that,
05:15
you know, those ingredients to our unique realities.
05:18
Yeah, you're sure what does it say?
05:20
It says housing is a human right.
05:22
Tenants strike balance. That's right.
05:24
That's right. It's love that.