Tenant Association President, Oceanside Housing Development in Far Rockaway, NY
Member since: 2016
In July 2022, CVH member Margareth went to Washington DC as a member of the Homes Guarantee Campaign, a delegation of tenant organizers and renters working toward fair and equitable housing. She met with federal officials to discuss the rise in rent inflation and ways to expand tenant protections.
While in DC, Margareth testified to Secretary Marcia Fudge of the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and expressed the need for tenant protections and increased federal funding for public housing. As a result, Secretary Fudge agreed to meet with NYCHA tenants in a smaller setting to hear their stories and begin to work on a plan to improve public housing.
We asked Margareth some questions about her experience in DC:
WHAT LED YOU TO ATTEND THE WASHINGTON D.C. TRIP WITH THE HOMES GUARANTEE DELEGATION?
I felt that there should be representation of NYCHA tenants in the meetings that were being held. The Homes Guarantee Campaign has shown support to NYCHA tenants in the past and have worked with us in the fight for respect and justice for NYCHA, and I felt like I should be supporting all renters going through this struggle. We are all fighting for justice for affordable housing and we want to see changes all over when it comes to where we live. I felt compelled to go to not only show my support but also meet with federal officials to describe the experiences NYCHA tenants are facing in NYC.
WHAT WERE THE OUTCOMES OF THE TRIP?
It was an eye-opening experience to hear the stories of other tenants that are experiencing hardship and struggles with housing. I was happy to partake in the HUD meeting and tell my story. It allowed me to see that not only NYCHA tenants are experiencing struggles but also others from across the country. I was happy to meet others in the group that are passionate in fighting for respect and working to make the bureaucrats that are profiting off of us accountable for their actions. I met some good people that don't deserve to go through the pain and hardship they are facing.
FINALLY, WHY ARE YOU A MEMBER OF CVH?
I believe that NYCHA is continuously disinvesting in our housing developments and I wanted to learn more about the ways I can change that and bring back NYCHA to the way it used to be. It was beautiful and was affordable. It allowed me to go to school and get a good job to provide and raise my family. It is no longer like that and I wanted to be around people that wanted to make positive changes in my community and in public housing.