Make Real News!

100K Challenge!

$90,102 raised so farEND DATE: October 5   
Every dollar you donate will be matched until we reach our 100K goal!
  • Latest News
  • Pitch a Story
  • Work with a Journalist
  • Join the Blog Squad
  • Afghanistan
  • Africa
  • Asia
  • Baltimore
  • Canada
  • Egypt
  • Europe
  • Latin America
  • Middle East
  • Russia
  • Economy
  • Environment
  • Health Care
  • Military
  • Occupy
  • Organize This
  • Reality Asserts Itself
  • US Politics
  • Movement to Occupy Vacant Houses Spreads


    Bronx activists supported by Occupy Wall Street enter second month of occupation -   January 10, 12
    Members don't see ads. If you are a member, and you're seeing this appeal, click here

    Audio

      Share to Twitter
    Share to Facebook




    I’ve made my way to my current internet haven: The Real News Network (TRNN). - Caroline Lewis
    Log in and tell us why you support TRNN

    Transcript

    Movement to Occupy Vacant Houses SpreadsJAISAL NOOR, JOURNALIST: In New York, Occupy Wall Street is continuing to shift its focus away from occupying parks and squares to other actions, such as occupying homes. In Brooklyn, New York, an occupation of a vacant home has entered its second month. Twenty-seven-year-old father of two Alfredo Carrasquillo has been in and out of homeless shelters for nearly ten years.

    ALDREDO CARRASQUILLO, COMMUNITY ORGANIZER, VOCAL-NY: When I was going through the shelter with my kids and their mother, and we decided we didn't want to go through that no more. And that's why I winded up couch hopping, because I didn't want to go through that experience anymore.

    NOOR: But after getting the support of community and church groups and Occupy Wall Street's Occupy Our Homes campaign, Carrasquillo spearheaded an effort to find a new home for his family.

    CARRASQUILLO: So you—please come inside.

    NOOR: Carrasquillo moved into a vacant home in Brooklyn's East New York neighborhood, which has experienced high rates of unemployment, foreclosures, and abandoned homes. Teams of Occupy Wall Street protesters have joined Carrasquillo in shifts to defend the occupation around the clock. They're also working alongside him to fix up the house and make it hospitable for his wife and children.

    CARRASQUILLO: So I felt it was my duty and obligation to stand up as a young man of color from these communities to lead by example to show that there's nothing ashamed with admitting that the system is wrong and is not allowing you to progress and be productive and own your own property and become a productive citizen in society.

    NOOR: In December, activists carried out a nationwide day of action to reclaim foreclosed homes from bailed-out banks and move homeless families into them. Although Carrasquillo is risking arrest, he hopes he'll gain a permanent home for his wife and children, who are 5 and 9 years old. He's in negotiations with Bank of America and the former owner to gain legal ownership of the property

    CARRASQUILLO: I came to this point where I jumped on this opportunity, and I wanted to make it a national movement to help all the families that are homeless and dealing with the situation I had to deal with.

    NOOR: Some neighborhood residents are expressing support for Carrasquillo and the efforts to fight back against corporate lending practices. Longtime Brooklyn resident Doyle Coleman lives three doors down.

    DOYLE COLEMAN, BROOKLYN RESIDENT: It's something me and the family welcomes, and also members of the community, because any time you have vacant property that's an eyesore with no upkeep, nobody to maintain it, nobody to take care about it, it brings the value of other people's property down.

    NOOR: Occupy Our Homes is a shift of focus for activists in New York. Organizer Elliot Tarver says they're now organizing actions around the needs of local communities.

    ELIOT TARVER, OCCUPY ORGANIZER: It's moved past just being symbolic, which is really what sleeping in Zucatti Park was, to taking things like homes and doing actions that create lasting change and that affect people rather than just spread a message, which is also important.

    NOOR: Tarver says Occupy Wall Street should not only build relationships with local communities, but put community members and organizations at the forefront of the movement.

    TARVER: But I think the concept of bringing together these different constituencies around an issue like housing or like student debt or whatever is a really important way to work and to kind of bridge gaps between the people who've been doing this organizing for years and years and years and this new movement which now has a ton of momentum behind it and a lot of resources. And so I think tightening up those working relationships is going to be a really important thing on the agenda in the next couple of months.

    NOOR: A recent study by the Center for Responsible Lending examining home loans received between 2004 and 2008 found one in four borrowers in low-income areas have been foreclosed on or risk foreclosure. More than 3.5 million people could still lose their homes to foreclosure, on top of the 2.7 million who already have. To reverse this trend, activists, including the group Take Back the Land, are vowing to expand eviction defenses and occupations across the country. Similar actions are underway in Atlanta, Chicago, and Seattle.

    IRA RHEINGOLD, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF CONSUMER ADVOCATES: What the Occupy movement really is simply pointing to and showing is that we have all these homeless people, we have all these houses that are vacant. we need to do something about it.

    NOOR: Ira Rheingold, Executive Director of the National Association of Consumer Advocates, says activists are succeeding in popularizing the idea of housing as a human right.

    RHEINGOLD: Ultimately will it move the policy debate? I think that's the most important thing, so that we actually have policies in place that promote people staying in their homes and finding decent housing for families who are homeless, which we really have failed to do in this country at this point.

    NOOR: Reporting for The Real News and FSRN, this is Jaisal Noor in New York.

    End

    DISCLAIMER: Please note that transcripts for The Real News Network are typed from a recording of the program. TRNN cannot guarantee their complete accuracy.


    Comments

    Our automatic spam filter blocks comments with multiple links and multiple users using the same IP address. Please make thoughtful comments with minimal links using only one user name. If you think your comment has been mistakenly removed please email us at contact@therealnews.com

    Comments


    Latest Stories


    Will You Put Us Over the Top?
    Phil Donahue on The Real News
    Acute Economic Inequality Underlies "Occupy Central" Protests in Hong Kong
    US-Brokered Afghan Unity Government Paves Way for Continued Military Presence
    Underestimating ISIS: An Indictment of Decades of Failed US Policy in the Middle East
    Ceasefire Agreements Do Not Address Key Issues in Ukraine
    Spanish Independence Movements and the Recolonization of Southern Europe
    Palestinian Authority Has No Legitimacy to Govern in Gaza
    TRNN Debate: Can Carbon Pricing Bring Down Global Carbon Emissions? (2/2)
    Ferguson Police Chief Sparks Fresh Round of Protests
    After Eric Holder Resigns, A Look at His Record on Bank Prosecutions
    TRNN Debate: Can Carbon Pricing Bring Down Global Carbon Emissions? (1/2)
    I Refused to be Treated like an Animal - Eddie Conway on Reality Asserts Itself (8/10)
    Baltimore Youth Speak about How to Reduce Violence (1/3)
    Turkish-Syrian Border "The Great Hole" in Obama's UN Speech
    Six Years in Solitary Confinement - Eddie Conway on Reality Asserts Itself (7/10)
    US Bombs Syria without Congressional Approval
    The Frame Up - Eddie Conway on Reality Asserts Itself (6/10)
    What Role Is Turkey Playing in the War against ISIS?
    Detroit's Water Shut-offs at the Center of Bankruptcy Proceedings
    Body of War
    Thousands #FloodWallStreet to Target Institutions Profiting from Climate Change
    Re-energizing the Electrical Grid
    Do We Need a War on U.S. Military Carbon Emissions?
    World Leaders to Emit Promises of Hot Air at UN Climate Summit
    Voices from the Historic 300,000+ Strong 'People's Climate March'
    Most Members of the Black Caucus Have Supported Police Militarization
    The Climate Crisis: Which Way Out?
    War, Whistleblowing and Independent Journalism Panel
    It's Time to Act on the Climate Crisis

    RealNewsNetwork.com, Real News Network, Real News, Real News For Real People, IWT are trademarks and service marks of IWT.TV inc. "The Real News" is the flagship show of IWT and Real News Network.

    All original content on this site is copyright of The Real News Network.  Click here for more

    Problems with this site? Please let us know

    Linux VPS Hosting by Star Dot Hosting