SAJE is a founding organization of the National Right to the City alliance.
We're reframing the fight against gentrification as a fight for the Right to the City.
The Home Page is a citizen journalism project aimed to raise awareness of slum housing conditions in order to change public policy. The site is a project of Strategic Actions for a Just Economy (SAJE) and is part of a larger effort to build leadership in the community and hold property owners and government officials accountable for the conditions that affect tenant's health and welfare. Funded by the California Endowment.
Grand Opening of Health Center a Critical Community Resource
On March 5, 2015 the United Neighbors In Defense Against Displacement (UNIDAD) coalition will celebrate the grand opening of the Rev. Warner Traynham Health Center, operated by St. John's Well Child & Family Center. Please join us on March 5 from 10am to 12pm at the Health Center located at 326 W. 23rd Street.
The opening of the Rev. Warner Traynham Health Center marks a victory by the communities of South Central Los Angeles in the struggle for health equity and human rights. The product of years of organizing and partnership between community members and supporters, the health center provides much-needed primary and specialty care services for more than 10,000 patient visits each year.
The 7,500 square foot Health Center is rent-free for 20 years and was paid for by the developer, GH Palmer & Associates. It is the cornerstone of a community benefits package that also includes:
SAJE joins its ACT-LA partners in the launch of a new report calling for a holistic approach to an expected $40 billion in transit investment across the city in order to strengthen neighborhoods and help existing residents and businesses thrive along transit corridors. “Transit for All – Achieving Equity in Transit-Oriented Development” contains recommendations for city leaders to use in developing a citywide strategy that protects affordable homes and small businesses in the path of mass transit.
Report Calls for Comprehensive Community Transit Investment Strategy to Strengthen Neighborhoods Along Mass Transit
Find the report here.
“Los Angeles is making an unprecedented investment in public transportation. For the system to work, we need to plan now to ensure it is accessible to those most likely to use it. This is going to depend on ensuring housing affordability and community economic development along transit lines,” said Laura Raymond, campaign director of the Alliance for Community Transit - Los Angeles (ACT-LA).
In Los Angeles, households earning less than $25,000 a year account for over three-quarters of workers who commute via public transportation. Keeping these households near public transportation is the key to ensuring our $40 billion transportation investment is effective. Yet research shows that transit investment often drives up housing costs near transit corridors, thus pushing out the population proven to use it. To promote healthy, transit accessible communities that everyone can afford, “Transit for All” urges the city to proactively enact policies to protect residents and small business owners from displacement, thus ensuring real greenhouse gas and pollution reductions and improvements in public health.
“As the transit build-out occurs, and the city overhauls its zoning code, it’s important to understand the real threat these forces impose on low income communities that haven’t been brought into the conversation,” said Fanny Ortiz, a Boyle Heights resident and ACT-LA member. “The city needs to act aggressively to ensure that affordable housing for very low-income families near transit is created, so that gentrification doesn’t decimate entire communities.”
ACT-LA cites the 2013 Cornfield Arroyo Seco Specific Plan (CASP) and the 2011 Mayor’s Transit Corridors Cabinet as promising precedents for the kind of innovations in urban planning and coordination of city agencies needed to plan for a more sustainable and equitable city. Additionally, they provide recommendations regarding housing, jobs and transportation to guide what they term a “re-imagining” of Los Angeles, including policies to:
SAJE, Esperanza and St. John's work with the Los Angeles Department of Public Health to improve code enforcement and making housing more healthy in South Los Angeles
SAJE, and our partners at St. John’s Well Child and Family Center and Esperanza Community Housing Corporation, have constructed a strong foundation for slum-housing policy and practice that has had a substantial impact on the environmental health of thousands of Los Angeles families.
We are currently engaged in a pilot program with the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health to improve code enforcement in local buildings and improve health outcomes for patients impacted by slum housing.
The pilot is part of the Department of Public Health’s new emphasis on housing as a key issue in public health, which they detail in their new report: “Social Determinants of Health: Housing and Health in Los Angeles County.”