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Talking Points

Housing is a human right: our collective well-being depends on everyone being housed. 

All of us need a safe place to live.

  • All of us need safe housing. Now more than ever our collective well-being depends on it. When this crisis ends, we all still need a safe place to live. 
  • Millions of Californians are one paycheck or illness away from becoming homeless. Almost 4 in 10 Californians were already in poverty or near poverty before COVID-19. Over 150,000 people are homeless in CA, 1.3 million renters have incomes at or below the poverty line, and 1.5 million pay more than 50% of their income for rent. In the last 10 years, average rents in California have doubled.
  • These same families will be the hardest hit by the stay-at-home orders and economic crisis, placing them in grave danger of being thrown out on the street.

As long as there is no income, there can be no housing payments. 

  • Before COVID-19, many of us were at the breaking point. Now we are broke.
  • Already, millions of Californians have had their incomes significantly reduced or lost entirely due to the pandemic, and yet our elected officials so far have failed to adequately protect Californians from the economic fallout of this crisis. 1 million people in California filed for unemployment in March alone and that number will only grow.
  • On April 1st, many of us will have to choose between food and rent, and on May 1st even more will be unable to pay. We refuse to stand by and allow our families, friends, neighbors and communities to be put in this position. 

We are all in this crisis together. 

  • We need each other and we are stronger together. When we are alone in not paying, we are vulnerable. When we act collectively, and don’t pay, we have greater power to push our Government to do the right thing, and help save lives by keeping people housed.  
  • We are coming together to demand an immediate cancellation of rent and mortgage payments until this crisis lifts.
  • On April 1st, Oakland is giving California a 30-day notice to cancel current rent and mortgage payments or else we will begin to withhold our rent.

Together we have the power to push our government to do the right thing, and help save lives by keeping people housed.  

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