TENANT RIGHTS PROJECT HOLDS SECOND PICKET OF DOWNTOWN PORTLAND SLUMLORD
Tenant Rights Project on March 24 held a second picket and protest at dowtown Portland slumlord admin office, of Central City Concern, over retaliatory eviction noitces, and violations of Oregon's landlord-tenant law. Activists also talked at Portland City Council before the picket.
Tenant Rights Project, together with community allies, held a second protest and picket at the adminitrative office of downtown Portland, 'non'profit slumlord, Central City Concern. The informational picket included housing activists, students from Reed and Willamette, and included a number of picket signs protesting recent retaliatory eviction notices against tenant activists, lack of livability and habitability in CCC housing units and buildings, and lack of transparency by the CCC board of directors.
CCC is a $33,000,000 per year landlord, with about $50,000,000 in capital projects in addition. Tenant organizers have sent three demand letters to the CCC board of directors requesting better pest control, better repairs, safety improvements to the buildings, and requesting that tenants be allowed to attend and speak at CCC monthly board meetings, held on a Wednesday evening once a month at the CCC admin office where last Wednesday's picket was held, at the corner of NW 6th and Everett streets.
One Butte building tenant, towards the tail end of the picket, decided to flip-off, through the window, the CCC CEO, Ed Blackburn (who makes $100,000 per year), and both Blackburn and his attorney reportedly came outside immediately to challenge 'questionable' picketing activity.
Blackburn, along with Portland housing commissioner Nick Fish, have issued a 10-page packet alleging that the concerns of activist tenants for the past two years are, in a word, bogus. Tenant activists responded with a 7-page packet, alleging that the Blackburn-Fish memo was, in a word, bogus. Both packets were cc'd to the other four memebers of Portland City Council. In addition, the tenant packet was cc'd to the CCC board of directors via US mail and hand-delivered to the 21-year CCC board president and downtown Portland real estate attorney, Dean Gisvold, located on the 16th floor of the Standard Insurance Bldg., across from city hall.
On Wednesday morning, March 24, prior to the picket, activist tenants and allies spoke briefly at Portland city hall to the council regarding the problems tenants are experiencing with CCC as a landlord. CCC enjoys millions of dollars in government funding from several sources, including the City of Portland. Jason Barbour, an alternative, activist candidate who has filed for housing commissioner Nick Fish's seat in the May, 2010, election, on Portland City Council, was one of the activist speakers at this city council meeting.
Activists from Tenant Rights Project and affiliated groups are planning a second picket, later in the spring, of Portland Business Alliance, re housing, sit-lie and TriMet austerity cutback issues which PBA has been involed with recently.
Tenant Rights Project meets weekly on Sunday nights at 6pm at Hot Lips Pizza at Portland State, 1906 SW Sixth.
address: PO Box 40011, Portland, Oregon 97240
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