Ahead of Critical Charter Vote, Minneapolis Residents and Organizations Call On Commission To Approve Rent Stabilization Amendments
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: July 7th, 2021
Contact: Arianna Feldman, Inquilinxs Unidxs Por Justicia/Renters United for Justice
firstname.lastname@example.org and 612-413-2364
MINNEAPOLIS – Everyone – no matter their race, income, or zip code – should have a safe, stable, affordable home. That is why the Home To Stay Coalition, representing thousands of renters, workers, and faith leaders in Minneapolis, is calling on the Charter Commission to approve two city charter amendments in order to provide the City Council with the authority to pass a rent stabilization policy.
As Minneapolis faces a housing crisis worsened by the financial crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, too many renters are beholden to landlords arbitrarily setting the price of rental housing each year.
Arianna Anderson, renter on the Northside of Minneapolis and leader with Inquilinxs Unidxs Por Justicia said:
“Every year my rent has steadily been increasing by $50-100. In the meantime, I haven’t gotten any raises at work. I can barely keep up with the rent on a fixed income and soon I will be priced out of the city at this rate”.
She added: “That is why I think the Charter Commission and the City Council need to approve all paths towards passing rent stabilization in Minneapolis. We are already in a housing crisis and the city needs to take action to keep it from getting any worse”.
The majority of Minneapolis households rent their homes, and 50% of renters pay more than a third of their income on rent. In addition, as the city of Minneapolis continues to work to address the racial disparities brought to light in the last few years, the coalition noted that people of color in Minneapolis are disproportionately cost-burdened renters. In 2016, there was not a single neighborhood in Minneapolis where the median Black household income could afford the median-priced rental unit.
The Home To Stay Coalition is fighting for a rent stabilization policy that would cap the amount that landlords can raise rent within a twelve month period.
In the 1980s, the Minnesota legislature passed a law banning cities from passing rent stabilization policies unless by referendum. That is why, in order for Minneapolis to have the authority to pass a rent stabilization policy, the city charter must be amended.
There are two proposed rent stabilization charter amendments:
- Council initiative: provide the city council the power to adopt a rent stabilization ordinance or put a rent stabilization ordinance on the ballot for voters
- Resident initiative: provide the people of Minneapolis the power to put a rent stabilization ordinance on the ballot for voters through a petition process
While the current proposed charter amendment is not a vote to enact a rent stabilization policy, the Home To Stay Coalition is urging the charter commission and council to support it as a necessary step in creating the processes to be able to pass a rent stabilization policy next year.
The Home To Stay Coalition believes that Minneapolis voters deserve the opportunity to vote on a critical rent stabilization policy that will ensure that all renters have a home to stay in our city. Chloe Jackson, Minneapolis renter and leader with Inquilinxs Unidxs Por Justicia said: “We need real solutions to the real housing crisis that we are in. It is really important that the City Council fights for all paths forward to pass a rent stabilization policy. We need both charter amendments to move forward so that the people of Minneapolis can vote for what we need”
The Home to Stay Rent Stabilization coalition is an alignment of organizations and unions representing thousands of Minneapolis residents across race, income and zip code who support amending the Minneapolis charter in order to give the city the power to pass a rent stabilization policy in 2022. Members of our coalition include United Renters For Justice/Inquilinxs Unidxs Por Justicia, ISAIAH, SEIU, Jewish Community Action, Unidos MN.
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