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United Not Blighted rally calls for Baltimore to invest in affordable housing, new jobs, green space

June 7, 2017

“We want to control the land so we can build places for people to live…to work…to grow food. The control of the land by the people for the people.”

Hundreds had gathered at the War Memorial building in Baltimore on a rainy Saturday afternoon. One by one, people rose from the crowd to share why they were fighting to build a city that is United Not Blighted. They described landlords who fail to maintain homes. Frequent evictions. Redevelopment that prices out current residents. As people from across the city shared their stories, they held up hope that another way is possible: a vision of thriving, healthy communities where there’s affordable housing, new jobs, and space for kids to play.

The United Not Blighted rally on May 13 kicked off this summer’s efforts to make that vision a reality. The rally highlighted the 20/20 campaign, which calls on Baltimore City to invest $20 million per year in permanently affordable housing and another $20 million per year to deconstruct vacants, creating new jobs, homes, and green spaces. This summer, the Baltimore Housing Roundtable will spearhead a petition drive and town hall meetings to demonstrate public support for this critical investment in our communities. The campaign is already garnering the attention of elected officials: several city council members attended the rally and Mayor Catherine Pugh publicly expressed her support. To get involved, contact Amanda DeStefano at amanda@unitedworkers.org or 410-259-6074. For more about the 20/20 campaign, check out this Real News Network interview with the Public Justice Center’s Matt Hill (chair of the Baltimore Housing Roundtable’s policy committee), United Workers leader LaQeisha Greene, and Baltimore Sun reporter Jean Marbella.
 



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