California’s housing unaffordability crisis has severely deepened throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, and in response ACCE Action launched an ambitious mass outreach and organizing program designed to bring tens of thousands of struggling tenants, from all parts of California, into the Housing Justice League. ACCE has created the infrastructure to do large-scale outreach through social media, radio ads and mass texting, and to move people into on-going Defend Your Home workshops, legal support, organizing training, and more. By June 2020, over 75,000 tenants had signed up to join the Housing Justice League.
The loss of income due to COVID-19 has meant that millions are unable to pay their rent and, as people do go back to work, they are not receiving back pay so, naturally, are often not able to pay back rent! Starting in April 2020, ACCE Action members have been pressuring local and state lawmakers to prevent evictions and forgive (or cancel) rent – and we’ve made a lot of progress. In January 2021, the State prohibited evictions due to non-payment of rent and created a large rent and utility assistance program. ACCE members and other allies then continued to push for a more universal program for income eligible people that did not require landlord participation. By June 2021 we had won this.
In a number of cities across the state, ACCE member have led successful campaigns to win stronger protections locally, from rent control and just cause for evictions, to COVID eviction protections and laws to combat landlord harassment.
The Housing Justice League is working to strengthen tenant protections across the state and secure more housing that is affordable to California’s lower income households. Join us! You can join the Housing Justice League here.