Amsterdam News: Protecting New York’s tenants: a fight worth fighting
By SEN. ADRIANO ESPAILLAT
Published: Thursday, May 19, 2011 12:05 AM EDT
Over the past decade, working families in New York have been battered by an economic recession we just can’t seem to shake and policies that reward the super-rich at the expense of the poor and middle class. Communities of color have been hit especially hard, suffering from a disproportionately higher rate of unemployment, incarceration and service cuts that strike at the heart of our social safety net.
Now, an impending housing disaster is staring our community in the eye.
With rent regulations set to expire on June 15, millions of New Yorkers could see their rents raised by thousands of dollars a year and lose critical protections that prevent unscrupulous landlords from harassing tenants and squeezing families out of their homes. This would disproportionately affect low-income earners and people of color.
This is why it is so important that we come together and fight to extend rent laws that are being targeted by wealthy landlords and Senate Republicans. My legislation (S.2783–A) will extend and strengthen rent regulations and protect over a million New York City families that would otherwise be devastated by the expiration of rent regulations. If passed, my bill will repeal vacancy decontrol—which has resulted in over 300,000 units of affordable housing being deregulated—and strengthen key tenant protections.