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Two Down, Four to Go: City Council Passes Policies to Slow Gentrification

Posted on 30. Oct, 2015 by

The New Orleans City Council made great strides in the past four months to pass two out of six policies to slow gentrification and protect long-term residents from displacement.

Still, there is far more to do as housing prices continue to rapidly increase. It will take a host of solutions to ensure the people who have made our city great for generations are not priced out.

Here are the four remaining ideas and the two that City Council already adopted.

Mazant_Royal

HANO’s Mazant-Royal property in the Bywater. Source: HANO

1. Make the best use of publicly owned properties in low-poverty neighborhoods.
With 3,000 city-owned lots up for auction and 233 HANO properties, we can do far more to hold some public land for affordable housing in quickly transitioning neighborhoods. Read More…

Six Ways to Slow Gentrification in New Orleans

Posted on 30. Jul, 2015 by

Housing prices are increasing rapidly, threatening to price out many long-term residents who have made this city great for generations.

Can New Orleans change course? Here are our ideas for six solutions. What are yours?

Mazant_Royal

HANO’s Mazant-Royal property in the Bywater. Source: HANO

1. Make the best use of publicly owned properties in low-poverty neighborhoods.
It’s time to be smart and targeted in how we use our remaining blighted lots. Read More…

What LAVAWA Means for You

Posted on 30. Jun, 2015 by

USA

The Louisiana Violence Against Women Act, or Senate Bill 174, will become law on August 1st, 2015. This bill was created through collaboration among housing advocates, domestic violence service providers and housing providers who believe that survivors should never have to choose between safety from abuse and a safe place to live. We look forward to continuing our partnerships in order to ensure that these protections are properly implemented.

Here are the four key provisions of the law: Read More…

SB 174: A Historic Victory in Louisiana

Posted on 09. Jun, 2015 by

Monika Gerhart-Hambrick (GNOFHAC), Beth Meeks (LCADV), Senate President Pro Tempore Sharon Weston Broome, Kim Sport (United Way), and Charmaine Caccioppi (United Way)

Monika Gerhart-Hambrick (GNOFHAC), Beth Meeks (LCADV), Senate President Pro Tempore Sharon Weston Broome, Kim Sport (United Way), and Charmaine Caccioppi (United Way)

This morning, thanks to supporters like you, the Louisiana Legislature passed a bill to protect victims of domestic violence from unnecessary evictions. I’m thrilled to report that the bill- the first of its kind in our state- is now on its way to the Governor’s desk to be signed into law!
Read More…

Abused and Evicted

Posted on 04. May, 2015 by

The client we profiled in an earlier blog post shared her gut-wrenching story of abuse and eviction in this week’s Gambit because she wants to ensure that other women don’t have to go through what she did. This happens every day in Louisiana, but state legislators have an opportunity to change that this session.

Gambit_DV_Cover Read More…

A Brave Survivor

Posted on 16. Apr, 2015 by

Being attacked by a loved one is a traumatic experience. To then have to decide between calling for help or risking eviction from your home is simply deplorable.

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Read More…

A sneak peek of our 2015 state legislative priorities.

Posted on 07. Apr, 2015 by

We’re committed to equal housing opportunity in Louisiana and it’s time again to make our case in Baton Rouge.

Our top priorities this year are: Read More…

The Prescription for Healthy Children Starts at Home

Posted on 19. Mar, 2015 by

According to a recent study by The Data Center, nearly 40% of New Orleans’ children live in poverty. While this statistic isn’t new to us, it stings every time we read it. It should also come as no surprise that the children who fall into that 39% are very likely to be living in substandard housing.

A safe home is the foundation for healthy growth and stability. Yet there are far too many toxic living spaces in this city, and it’s time that we address that problem wholeheartedly for the sake of our children’s futures.

Blog_Children_in_Poverty_V2_15.3.12 Read More…

Council Heard Us Loud and Clear! Thank You!

Posted on 13. Feb, 2015 by

NolaDeservesBetter

On Wednesday, GNOFHAC joined tenants, landlords, and community leaders to urge City Council to improve the quality of rental homes in New Orleans. Individuals and organizations shared testimony that painted a horrific picture of the conditions far too many New Orleans residents are living in.

Many people also voiced support for a rental registry program, although an ordinance has not yet been proposed. The program, enacted in numerous cities nationwide, would affirmatively inspect rental properties to insure all rental homes meet basic health and safely standards. Read More…

Fair Housing Center Applauds Council Members for Listening to Community Concerns; Urges Legislation

Posted on 12. Feb, 2015 by

During a hearing of the Community Development Committee this afternoon, Councilmembers listened to the concerns of a broad array of community members about the widespread problem of poor conditions in New Orleans rental homes. Individuals and organizations including tenants and landlords testified about their frustrations with the current under-resourced and complaint driven system for code enforcement, along with the need for an affirmative inspection process for all rentals in the City.

Councilmembers Jason Williams and Latoya Cantrell have taken leadership to address longstanding problems with New Orleans rentals, most recently documented in a report issued by a group of community organizations. Though an ordinance has not yet been introduced, the Councilmembers and their staff have indicated that a citywide rental registry program would be most effective in maintaining a baseline standard of health and safety for renters, which make up over half of New Orleans’ population.

Testimony during the hearing painted a disturbing picture of the City’s rentals- Laura Tuggle of Southeast Louisiana Legal Services described a client who is visually impaired and lived in an apartment that had raw sewage running down the walls. There were also landlords present, like Roux Merlo, who voiced their support for an affirmative inspection process that will level the playing field for landlords that want to do right by their tenants.

James Perry, Executive Director of the Greater New Orleans Fair Housing Action Center, comments “Nearly every New Orleanian has a horror story when it comes to unsafe conditions in a rental home: calls to a landlord or 311 that were ignored when mold took over the bathroom, kitchen appliances that didn’t work for months, or a leaky roof that ended up ruining a treasured possession. Today’s hearing was a first step towards transforming a legacy of poor quality in many of the City’s rental homes. Now is the time for our leaders to take the next step and introduce legislation that establishes a rental registry that works for New Orleans.”

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Greater New Orleans Fair Housing Action Center (GNOFHAC) is a private nonprofit organization. GNOFHAC is dedicated to eliminating housing discrimination and furthering equal housing opportunities through education, outreach, advocacy, and enforcement of fair housing laws across the metro New Orleans and Baton Rouge areas. The activities described in this release were privately funded.