We Won’t Move: Tenants Organize in New York City
Opening March 26, 2015
Exhibition dates: March 26 – June 15, 2015
Interference Archive presents We Won’t Move: Tenants Organize in New York City, an exploration of collective action by NYC tenants for decent and affordable housing from the 1940s to the present. The creation and subsequent dismantling of the rent regulation system forms the backdrop to a rich history of tenant struggle, including: neighborhood resistance to urban renewal in the South Bronx, integration struggles at Stuyvesant Town and in Brooklyn, rent strikes in Harlem and Bedford-Stuyvesant, the coordinated takeover of vacant housing during Operation Move-In, and repeated campaigns to renew and strengthen the rent laws. In addition to highlighting the diverse array of tactics employed by tenant organizers, the exhibition situates the fight for affordable housing within racial and economic justice struggles. Through these campaigns New Yorkers have claimed the right to live in a city that is integrated and affordable. The exhibition brings together materials from tenant organizations, community archives and institutions to present flyers, posters, photographs, newspaper clippings and audio recordings from past and present tenant organizing.
The final section of the exhibition, developed in collaboration with tenant organizations from across the city, examines current campaigns against tenant harassment, predatory equity, luxury housing, the cluster site shelter program, and gentrification-driven policing. With New York’s rent laws set to expire in June 2015, this exhibition showcases our city’s continuous history of effective and militant tenant action for housing justice.
Organized by Maggie Schreiner with Ash Bayer, Bonnie Gordon, Lani Hanna, Jen Hoyer, Karen Hwang, and Greg Mihalko
A program series accompanying the exhibition will provide trainings to build the power of new and old tenant organizers, and connect participants with current housing justice campaigns. Check back here regularly for updates to our list of related programming.
All programming is at Interference Archive (131 8th St #4, Brooklyn NY 11215) unless otherwise stated.
Admission for all programming is by donation.
Screening and Discussion: My Brooklyn
Saturday April 4th, 7pm
with Director Kelly Anderson
Workshop: Strengthening Rent Regulation
Friday April 10th, 3pm
with Tenants and Neighbors
This workshop will explore the loopholes in the rent regulation system and how they cause gentrification in our communities. Participants will also learn about the current campaign for a stronger rent regulation system.
Panel Discussion on Policing and Gentrification
Thursday April 30th, 7pm
Introduction by: Christina Hanhardt, author of Safe Space: Gay Neighborhood History and the Politics of Violence
Panelists include Equality for Flatbush, GOLES, Picture the Homeless
This panel brings together organizers, residents and academics to discuss the intersections between policing and housing policy. Topics include policing in public housing, in rapidly gentrifying neighborhoods, and of people experiencing marginal housing.
Workshop: Know Your Rights for Tenants
Wednesday May 6th, 7pm
with Mario Mazzoni (Penn South Mutual Redevelopment Houses)
This workshop will give an overview of the basic rights for all NYC tenants. Learn about how to determine what type of housing you live in, and how to fight for your rights as a tenant.
Housing Justice in NYC: Tenant Organizers in Conversation
Saturday May 16th, 4pm
***Location: Brooklyn Public Library: Central Library, Info Commons Lab
with: CAAAV: Organizing Asian Communities, Community Action for Safe Apartments,Cooper Square Committee, Crown Heights Tenant Union, Equality for Flatbush, Flatbush Tenant Coalition, Met Council on Housing, Tenants and Neighbors
Please join us for an informal conversation with tenant organizers and leaders from across the city. This event is an opportunity to learn about what is happening in different neighborhoods, as well as getting to know the organizations and individuals fighting for housing justice in NYC.
Open House and Curator Tour
Saturday May 30th, 1pm
Please join us for an open house of the exhibition, and a tour with the curators starting at 2pm.