Category: News

Fight vs. unjust evictions wins change in Ferndale Housing Commission policy

More than 60 people showed support for Charmonique at a Rent Party in September.

On January 21, 2015, the Ferndale Housing Commission voted to CHANGE THEIR POLICY which stated they wouldn’t give a housing voucher to anyone attempting to rent a home with a boarded-up house within three blocks.  This effectively removed Detroit as a housing option, and prevented people who want to live in Detroit from doing so.

They also returned housing vouchers to Ms. Charmonique Hopkins and to Ms. Teresa Benton and made Ms. Hopkins “whole” by paying her back rent and utility bills. This means  Ms. Hopkins and her family will remain in their home near Livernois and Fenkell. It means Ms. Benton and her family can return to the home they had been forced to vacate on Prevost in Detroit.  This is an important victory for these women and for the broader community.

This victory was won due to the efforts of both Ms. Hopkins and Ms. Benton and the solidarity and direct action of Detroit Eviction Defense and Detroit Tenant Defense.  Both spoke eloquently about the struggles they went through, including stress and homelessness, and the impact on their families caused by the racist actions of Ferndale Housing Commission.

See Oakland County 115 write-up on the victory here.

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Jennifer Britt fended off eviction, saved home!

Detroit’s Grandmont-Rosedale neighborhood offers key support

Jennifer had paid $46,000 to save a Rosedale Park-Detroit home that’s worth $25,000; 100 people held dawn-to-dusk vigil for two months to prevent eviction. Detroit Eviction Defense organized house-to-house leafleting of the neighborhood, informing them of Jennifer’s problem and inviting them to call the bank.

Spirited rally at the Federal Building, where 60-70 people protested Fannie Mae’s refusal of the offer by Michigan Lending Solutions to buy Jennifer’s house at its appraised value.

The committee also picketed, with UAW Local 600, at both Flagstar Bank, the holder of her mortgage, and at Fannie Mae, who backed it.

Demonstrating at Flagstar.

As the eviction order was issued, DED invited neighbors to participate in the 12-hour vigil. DED also held weekly meetings on Jennifer’s lawn.

As the vigil began July 19, 2012 Jennifer told her story (below) to a WWJ reporter, who found bank’s actions “unbelievable.”

Read the article and watch the Huffington Post story & video.

After the two-month vigil, Fannie Mae finally agreed to work out an agreement to sell Ms. Britt her home — a home she and her family live in today.


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