Plus: Other Queer and Trans BIPOC Housing Projects Taking Root in Seattle
by Mark Van Streefkerk
When it comes to housing resources for their own communities, queer and trans Black, Indigenous, People of Color (QTBIPOC) are doing it for themselves. Three different Seattle-area QTBIPOC organizations have permanently acquired (or are close to acquiring) buildings that will be used for temporary and semi-permanent housing for QTBIPOC facing housing insecurity. These recent or projected acquisitions for Trans Women of Color Solidarity Network (TWOCSN), Lavender Rights Project (LRP), and Queer the Land (QTL) is the culmination of years of work and advocacy, along with a little boost from the racial reckonings of 2020.
Continue reading House of Constance Will Provide Housing and Services for Queer and Trans BIPOC
by Elizabeth Turnbull
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), and the King County Housing Authority (KCHA) launched a program in June that works to connect veterans who are experiencing houselesness with new housing opportunities and additional resources.
Organizers are calling the pilot program a first of its kind in the U.S. as it administers federal housing vouchers for veterans, which provide rental assistance, while also providing participants with supportive services from the King County Veterans Program (KCVP). Caseworkers at KCVP’s Tukwila and Northgate locations are working on the program, which aims to help more than 140 local veterans.
Continue reading New Program Aims To Help Veterans Experiencing Houselessness Find Homes
by Andrew Engelson
Seattle City Councilmembers Tammy Morales and Teresa Mosqueda sponsored an online forum on July 22 to explore issues surrounding displacement and exclusionary zoning that could fundamentally change the way Seattle grows in coming decades.
Continue reading City Council Forum Addresses Displacement and Exclusionary Zoning
by Samira George
(This article originally appeared in Real Change and has been reprinted under an agreement.)
“I used to live in those apartments,” Dee Powers, a 38-year-old Seattleite, said wistfully, “but I got priced out.” Standing in Seattle’s Occidental Park, coffee in hand, Powers stared at the distinctive white point of Smith Tower where across the street rests the old apartment Powers called home for five years.
The burst of the housing bubble in 2008 allowed Powers to rent a downtown apartment for $650 a month, but in 2015 they came home to a 60-day notice and a warning of a 40% rent increase. Since then, Powers has called a 40-foot RV home.
On April 13, five vehicle residents gathered at an action meeting in Occidental Park to share their unique car-living experiences in a city with a checkered past. All of the residents, including Powers, have either lived or are currently roaming Seattle’s streets in vehicles.
Continue reading Ticketing Vehicle Residents Is Eviction and Happening, Despite COVID-19 Moratoriums
by Jack Russillo
On Wednesday, Seattle City Councilmember Tammy Morales proposed legislation to close a legal loophole that allows landlords to evict tenants without providing a justification.
The legislation, which Morales is calling the first in a series of “Tenants’ Bill of Rights” legislation, would bar landlords from evicting tenants without giving a reason and would automatically convert all fixed-term leases (those that last for a specific period, such as six months or a year) into month-to-month leases once they expire.
Continue reading Councilmember Morales Unveils Legislation to Stop “Discriminatory” Loophole and Prevent No-Cause Evictions
by Ashley Archibald
In a video posted to YouTube, a woman in a blue surgical mask stands in the corner of a walled-off yard, a puffy, slate gray jacket zipped against the cold. To her right is a table draped with a white cloth holding 19 votive candle holders. Slowly, deliberately, the woman reads a list of names.
In the silence following each name, a man lights a candle.
Continue reading A Hard Year for Those Without Shelter: Death Rates Rose and Pressures Increased for the Homeless During the Pandemic
by Kamna Shastri
Seattle continues to wrestle with a homelessness crisis that seems to grow each day. Different circumstances can lead an individual to struggling on the streets, but a report from the Seattle Women’s Commission and the Housing Justice Project is bringing attention to just how much eviction contributes to the pipeline of homelessness.
Continue reading Losing Home Report Reveals Deeper Understanding About Seattle Area Evictions