You are invited to our Moral Monday vigil in front of the Julia Morgan Y (76 N Marengo St. across from the First Baptist Church) at 5 pm every Monday that the City Council is in session. That means Feb 3 and every Monday in February except for Feb 17 and every Monday in March except for March 2.
During this Moral Monday vigil (named after Rev. Will Barber's Moral Mondays in North Carolina), we hold up a banner advocating for homeless/affordable housing in our Civic Center, share stories and get to know each other better, and then have a time of prayer and reflection in front of the Mack and Jackie Robinson statues in front of City Hall. Eight to twelve of us gather for this very powerful time of prayer and reflection in which we pray to end homelessness in our city. We are often joined by pastors and by people who are experiencing homelessness.
The good news is that our prayers and our advocacy are making a difference. We just learned from Pasadena Now that the City Council decided in closed session to give preference to "affordable housing" at the Civic Center. Praise God!
Although the political prospects are looking good, it is imperative that we have a huge turnout when the Civic Center comes up for a vote in February, and make sure we flood the City Council with letters.
Heritage Square South still uncertain? We prayed, held vigils and waged a ten-month campaign to convince the Council to approve 65 units of homeless senior housing on a city-owned lot on the corner of Fair Oaks and Orange Grove. In December last year the City unanimously approved this project and we thought it was a done deal. We were just informed that there is one more crucial step. After the Council approved a developer called Bridge Housing to come up with plans and funding for mixed use, this plan is now ready and will come up for a vote in late March. It is possible that a Council member might oppose it so we must be prepared to bring as many people as possible to the City when this comes up for a vote.
La lucha continua....or as Dr. King used to say, the "beautiful struggle" for justice continue....
Thanks be to God, our efforts are having a positive effect on our city and are not going unnoticed.
First, Alex Cordero wrote a fine article about Making Housing and Community Happen in the Pasadena Independent: https://www.pasadenaindependent.com/community/making-housing-community-happen-celebrates-1st-anniversary-in-pasadena/ She also wrote about our Candidate Forum: https://www.pasadenaindependent.com/news/candidates-attend-greater-pasadena-affordable-housing-group-forum/
Second, Jill is quoted in this article from Pasadena Now: http://www.pasadenanow.com/main/city-leaders-react-after-governor-newsom-concedes-affordable-housing-claims-based-on-outdated-research/#.XjOwhGhKg2w
Her words are worth ending this blog with:
“Whether you agree with Newsom that California needs 3.5 million new units of housing, or 1.5 million, as others have argued, it should be noted that there huge need not just for housing, but for affordable housing,” Shook said. “In our city of Pasadena, for example, we are building far more deluxe units than are needed, and far fewer affordable units than are needed. Reforms like facilitating the building of accessory dwelling units (“granny flats”) are a modest step forward. But what we really need are billions in state and federal funding for low-income housing and we need legislation to ensure that a significant percentage of new housing be set aside as affordable. We don’t need 1.5 million more deluxe homes. We need affordable housing for all income levels.”