As we begin the new year, many Philadelphians are looking at their budgets and hoping to find a way to pay for all the things they need this year. Rent is one of the fundamental things most working-class and poor Philadelphians must find the funds for. So in our Winter/Spring issue, contributors to the Partisan consider the housing situation in Philadelphia.
As developers continue to make high-end, luxury row homes, instead of affordable housing options, fewer and fewer people can afford to own homes. Instead, many in the city are renting, even as rent continues to climb. Politicians talk about improving job numbers and rising stock prices — even an economic recovery! Meanwhile, working people struggle to afford rent and mortgages, in no small part because the “economic recovery” is a myth. The money that we earn each paycheck just isn’t worth as much when everything we pay for — food, housing, medical care, transportation — is getting more and more expensive. Real wages stagnate as real estate developers, government officials, and speculators fill their coffers with profits.
But it isn’t all doom and gloom, as we highlight some of the great organizing the Philadelphia Tenants’ Union is doing. From supporting local tenants like Ricci who have been wrongfully evicted, to fighting shady landlords at apartment complexes like Admiral/Dorsett, the PTU has been fighting landlords and helping tenants with one of the most basic needs. Plus, let’s not forget the Tenants Union’s incredible victory with the passage of the Good Cause bill through City Council!
Let’s build on the successes of 2018 and fight for more power in the hands of tenants! More power in the hands of those marginalized by capitalism, for-profit landlords, and greedy corporations! Housing is a human right, not an uncertain luxury.
Design and layout: Alex Zahradnik
Arts Editor: Gina Lerman
Editorial Collective: J.M. Audrey, Adryan Corcione, Avery Minnelli, Suzy Subways, James Yeun
Contributors: Samya Abu-Orf, Corey Brickley, K. Daniel Bryan, Mike Chen, Stephanie Czapla, Xander Fraum, Jack Grauer, Madison J. Gray, John L. Hill, Matthew MacDermant, Quinn McGarrigle, Jorge Navarrete, Evelyn Pandos, Maddie Rose