reblogging this here because if you don’t support the rights and wellbeing of the poor and working class, you are not a true butch or femme!
spread the word about this and start organizing if you can!! if you or anyone you know is afraid or unsure of what to do about eviction, encourage them to join the rent strike! stand strong and stand together, sisters! ♡
this wont work unless you get other people that your landlord rents to on board. talk to other people in your building or on your property about it. If only one person doesn’t pay rent, it’s not a strike. You’ll just get in trouble for not paying rent. If nobody pays rent, it is a strike.
Get your neighbors and fellow tenants onboard.
What Is A Rent Strike?
A rent strike is a collective refusal by tenants of a building, housing project, or dwelling to pay rent to their landlord. Often, groups of tenants have set demands that they want addressed, such as: unfair rents, unmade repairs, or an end to harassment by management.
Throughout history, rent strikes have been a tactic utilized by renters to combat slumlords, racism and attacks on civil rights, high rents, and also secure and defend housing for poor and working people in times of crisis, pandemic, and economic depression.
In recent years in the face of the growing housing crisis, rent strikes have grow in popularity in larger cities as a tactic utilized by renters to fight back against predatory landlords. Organizations such as the LA Tenants Union and Parkdale Organize have mobilized to back massive rent strikes which have resulted in key victories for tenants. Occupations of vacant housing, such as the recent occupation organized by Moms 4 Housing in Oakland, CA, have also resulted in victories.
Who Is Calling For The Strike?
There are a wide variety of autonomous groups, organizations, networks, and individuals who are pushing for the rent strike. This includes:
A network of autonomous anti-capitalist groups and organizations across the country.
The group Rent Strike 2020, which has been pushing petitions signed by tens of thousands of people.
Groups of renters, such as the anarchist housing collective, Station 40, located in the Mission District of San Francisco, who have publicly declared that they will go on rent strike starting April 1st.
Seasoned tenant organizations such as Parkdale Organize.
Hasn’t The Government Called Off Evictions?
In short, the government is some areas has placed a moratorium on evictions. This means simply that for a set amount of time, they agree to not evict anyone who can’t pay their rent, but they still expect you to pay it at a later date and in a timely manner. This means more debt and more payment of money you don’t have.
As 5 Demands, an online rent strike hub, wrote:
Current moratoriums on evictions and utility shut offs protect you from immediate threat of losing your home or having your utilities shut off, as long as those moratoriums are in place. Your landlord can’t file for eviction for non-payment during the moratorium and the utility companies can’t turn off your water or electricity. You can use the money you’ve kept on the immediate things you need, like medicine and food. The moratoriums alone don’t prevent you from owing back-payment once they lifted, though. That’s why we are pushing for a rent and debt cancellation, so millions of people are not facing insurmountable debt on the other end of this crisis.
We also know that millions of people organized and united in refusing to pay will overwhelm court and eviction symptoms, which have a finite capacity.
Won’t A Rent Strike Hurt Landlords?
Simply put, for middle-class landlords who rent out extra property, there are simply more protections from foreclosure than there are for renters. Homeowners across the US are getting federal mortgage relief and HUD has also called for a halt on foreclosures. According to NPR, homeowners can also have their “mortgage payments reduced or suspended for up to 12 months.” In cities like New York, there is currently a moratorium on mortgages for 90 days, while in California, those paying a mortgage will be given a grace period.
Corporations like Subway, the Cheesecake Factory, and Adidas have already declared that they won’t pay rent in April. There’s mortgage relief for the middle class, but none for renters. They want the poorest to foot the bill.
It should also be noted that many corporate retail stores are also not able to pay rent and are currently working with landlords to pay reduced or restructured rent – or in some cases even given grace periods.
For renters, these protections do not exist – our only way forward is through collective action. As Parkdale Organize wrote:
Landlords’ resources will allow them to withstand the COVID-19 pandemic better than most, while tenants are more and more concerned with our daily survival. The government has already announced financial support and mortgage suspensions for businesses and landlords. By keeping our rent we will have more money for groceries, medicine, disinfectant supplies, and other basic necessities. Our landlords will be fine without our rent. We may not be.
How Can I Plug Into The Rent Strike?
The best way to is link up with a group that already exists or one closest to you.
You can also call this hotline and talk to organizers who will help you find local initiatives and resources for your strike:
WEB: 5 Demands Global
CALL: (312) 883-4677
TEXT: (316) 742-0167
Atlanta Survival Program
Rent Strike ATX | 512-200-7750
Rent Strike Carbondale
Autonomous Tenants Union
Chicago Medical Autonomy
Denver Rent Strike COVID-19
Colorado Rent Strike and Eviction Defense
Can’t Pay Won’t Pay DURM
Flagstaff Rent Strike
Rent Strike IE
Rent Strike Kingston
Rent Strike London
LA Tenants Union
Madison Rent Strike 2020
Rent Strike Twin Cities | (763) 294-5592
Greve des Loyers
NEW YORK CITY
COVID-19 Rent Strike
COVID-19 Rent Strike Ottawa | +1 (353) 883-5608
Philadelphia Tenants Union
PDX Rent Strike
Eagle Mill Rent Strike | 804-554-4032
Pollard & Bagby Tenants Council
Richmond Tenants Defense Council
Bay Area Rent Strike
Tenant and Neighbor Council
Oakland Tenants Union
SF Eviction Defense Collaborative
Drop Rent Santa Cruz
Seattle Rent Strike
STL Rent Strike
Sample letters to neighbours and landlords:
Dealing with landlords:
Coronavirus rent strike info:
This April, millions won’t be able to afford their bills even if they want to pay them. Like the pandemic, this is the inevitable consequence of a system that wasn’t designed to keep us safe in the first place.
Organize for self-defense!
late stage capitalism: i can’t believe we have to let all these people die to save the economy.
everyone: no you really don’t have to do that, like we might be able to stagger people in quarantine and we could instill a UBI at least temporarily and freeze rents there are ways to save people-
late stage capitalism: nah we’re gonna let all these people die.
Do they not get that if millions of people die it will also crash the economy