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Homes for all

Everyone needs and deserves safe and affordable housing. In a district where one in three residents is rent-burdened, we must stop the skyrocketing costs of living and keep neighbors in our communities.

Housing Is a Human Right

Housing is more than just shelter, it’s a fundamental necessity of life. Without it, meaningful participation in society is impossible. New York is facing a historic housing crisis because legislators in Albany, a quarter of whom are landlords, continue to put real estate profits over people. Nearly one in nine New York City students was homeless in 2023. One in three New York City tenants pay half their income in rent. In Assembly District 37, 73% of households are renting, more than 45% of renters are rent-burdened or severely rent-burdened, and eviction filings more than doubled from 2021 to 2022. 

In Ridgewood, where I live, rent is reaching historic highs, while rent stabilized apartments have been disappearing faster than anywhere in New York City. 

Every person deserves a safe and affordable place to call home, regardless of their income or background. However in our current system, housing is prioritized as an instrument for profit and speculation, not as a universally necessary human right. This has led to skyrocketing rents, unjust evictions, and homelessness, especially among marginalized communities. Despite the fact that almost 70% of New Yorkers are renters, tenants’ rights are routinely disregarded, leaving many vulnerable to exploitation and displacement. 

To address New York’s housing crisis, we need bold action that prioritizes people over real estate profits. Incremental changes won’t suffice; we must advocate for transformative policies – like real Good Cause eviction, Green Social Housing, fully funding NYCHA, expanded rent stabilization, the Housing Access Voucher Program, and the Tenant Opportunity to Purchase Act – that ensure everyone has access to permanently affordable housing and treat housing as a human right.

Building Tenant Power

Good Cause Eviction
Recently New York passed a watered down Good Cause Eviction bill that unfortunately leaves millions of New Yorkers unprotected. Good Cause has been a centerpiece of my campaign and passing the original, substantive bill is vital to ensuring Queens’ working families can stay in their homes. Good Cause Eviction means exactly what it says: that landlords must have good cause to evict tenants, such as failing to pay rent or breaking a rule in their lease, and cannot simply evict for no reason at all. We need to pass the original legislation that protects tenants from unreasonable rent hikes and discriminatory evictions.

Expanding Rent Stabilization
There are about a million rent stabilized apartments in New York City. This program is a lifeline to New Yorkers who would not be able to afford market-rate apartments. It is a program that we know works to keep communities whole and to provide long term security to working families. However, after decades, more and more apartments are falling out of stabilization, exacerbating New York’s housing crisis. We should expand stabilization to ensure New York is a city of working people, not just millionaires.

Tenant Opportunity to Purchase Act
Tenants should never be displaced because landlords and speculators treat the housing market like a casino. The Tenant Opportunity to Purchase Act will give tenants the right to make the first offer if a building’s landlord decides to sell it. Not only would TOPA give tenants the opportunity to control their own futures, it would interrupt the union-busting associated with selling well-organized buildings.

Transitioning to a Just and Social Housing Economy

Green Social Housing
In a city where only around half of residential construction is built with union labor and over a third of renters spend 50% of their income on rent, it’s more important than ever to fight for healthy housing and good jobs. The Green Social Housing bill (A9088) would create the Social Housing Development Authority, a new agency that would build, acquire, rehabilitate, and finance high-quality, permanently affordable, sustainable housing. Rent would be capped at 25% of a tenant’s income, and affordable financing would be available to tenants who wish to collectively purchase their buildings and turn them into co-ops.

NYCHA provides housing for one in 17 New Yorkers. Yet for the hundreds of thousands who live in NYCHA units, complaints abound of broken elevators, mold, and inhumane conditions after decades of disinvestment. Taxing the super-rich to fund NYCHA would bring necessary repairs and green retrofits to aging buildings, and guarantee safe, stable, and dignified housing for tenants.

Housing Access Voucher Program
There are currently nearly 80,000 unhoused New Yorkers, with some studies showing the number as high as 146,000. Seventy-eight percent of low-income tenants spend more than 30% of their income on rent. Over 100,000 children in NYC do not have a permanent place to call home. This is a crisis that we can and must solve. The Housing Access Voucher Program will provide the most vulnerable New Yorkers – including low-income families facing eviction, unhoused people, or those facing a loss of housing due to domestic violence or hazardous living conditions – with the funds they desperately need to get into a stable, and safe home.