On Thursiday, August 26, members of SOS Network joined Chinatown Community for Equitable Development (CCED) at an event in support of the tenants at 651 N. Broadway in Chinatown, Los Angeles. 651 N. Broadway is a “single room occupancy” building of renters, many of whom have been living there for decades and several are now seniors on fixed income. What they are going through is part of the larger crisis of affordability in housing in the United States and intensifying corporate developer pressures to “gentrify” and displace the Chinatown community.
Currently in Los Angeles, corporate, for-profit developers (like Pacifica Companies in Boyle Heights and Lincoln Heights) are part of the violent push to drive up rents, monopolize the land and convert it into capital extraction projects to the demise of entire local communities like Chinatown.
651 N. Broadway’s slumlord, Howard Chan, runs a bank in Chinatown. After weeks of protest, he refused to replace a non-working stove with one that worked properly. There have been unfixed water leaks and broken plumbing and bug infestations. On top of this, the tenants have had to fend off unreasonable rent increases while the building manager, Elizabeth Munoz, has stolen hand-washed clothes from the rear stairs railing – Chan refuses to install a washer and dryer in the building and there is no accessible laundromat in Chinatown.
Please support CCED and the residents of 651 N. Broadway in their fight for healthy and affordable housing, dignity and respect.
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