Demanding Rollback, Winning A Freeze

Last night, NYC tenants made history for a second year in a row with another rent freeze from the RGB:  0% for one year lease renewals, and 2% for two year lease renewals!

Flatbush Tenant Coalition leaders joined hundreds of New York City tenants and advocates on Monday, June 27th, 2016 for a rally at the RGB’s final hearing to demand a RENT ROLL BACK. By night’s end, NYC tenants made history for a second year in a row with another rent freeze from the RGB: 0% for one year lease renewals, and 2% for two year lease renewals!

It took months of rallies, media coverage, and the testimony of hundreds of tenants who all told the RGB that another increase was all that stood between tens of thousands of NYC families and homelessness.

Flatbush Tenant Coalition leaders, Thurston, Redoneva and Rita make sure Flatbush tenants’ voices are heard at a Cooper Union rally on Monday June 27th, 2016 in New York City. The powerful rally took place just hours before New York City’s Rent Guidelines Board voted to freeze rents for one-year lease renewals and increase rents for two-year lease renewals by 2%. 

Our Coalition leaders were amongst those brave tenants who testified, rallied, spoke with the press and spread the word!

But as our own Beverly Rivers told reporters last night, while we are proud of winning another rent freeze, we are bitterly disappointed that the RGB didn’t vote for a RENT ROLLBACK.


Tenants demanded and deserved it.

“We want a rollback in the rent,” Flatbush Tenant Coalition leader, Lucia Muniz told the Village Voice. “And we’re going to keep fighting until we get it.”

“Once you pay your rent, you don’t have any money left for anything else,” Coalition leader, Ruth Riddick said in an interview with Gothamist.

“These increases put such a strain on you,” tenant leader Redoneva Andrews told Patch.

The data about landlord profits clearly supported it.

But we know that the “arc of the moral universe is long,” and we know that “it bends towards justice.”

We will continue this fight and we will not be dissuaded.

In an interview with DNA Info, NYC Council Member Jumaane Williams reinforced tenants’ victory saying, “While tonight’s decision by the Rent Guidelines Board was not the rent rollback that many working class New Yorkers have sought and needed, tenants should still feel empowered. For 2 historic years, this board has asked the question of ‘whether there should be an increase?’ before they asked the question of ‘how much?’ The answer this year, at least for one type of lease, was thankfully no.”

Just three years ago, a rent freeze was an impossible dream. Last year and again yesterday, NYC tenants made it a reality.

Today, justice demands a rent rollback, and we will continue the fight until we make it a reality for all NYers!




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