Thursday, August 29, 2013
Occupy Our Homes Atlanta member Jaye Crawford has been fighting for housing justice for six months, and she’s not giving up yet. She’s hired civil rights attorney Robert Patillo to take her fight to court.
Jaye Crawford has lived in her zoned-commercial unit for 14 years, which serves as both a living and work space for her personal training studio. When Jaye took a neighbor to court over incessant noise violations (and WON) property owner Henry Finkbeiner and manager Hugh Trotti refused to renew her lease. Mr. Trotti’s stated his reason: “No one reason in particular.” Mr. Finkbeiner nor Mr. Trotti have yet to address the law-breaking tenants.
Occupy Our Homes Atlanta, Rainbow PUSH, and the AFSC have been fighting alongside Jaye since May of this year. Working with Jaye, we have launched an online petition, organized housing justice cookouts, held rallies, and had multiple candlelight vigils in front of Hugh Trotti's home.
Attorney Patillo, who will file the law suit against The Warehouse Lofts on Jaye’s behalf, will also represent her in dispossessory court next Thursday (September 5th). Attorney Patillo is hopeful that an agreement can be reached between both parties. However, if an agreement is not reached, Jaye and Attorney Patillo are prepared to proceed with the law suit.
Jaye's fight for housing justice is bigger than her. "No one has ever stood up to The Warehouse Lofts before. Someone has to, or they will keep giving tenants raw deals without thinking twice. Most people who receive a letter that their lease will not be renewed just pack up and move because they don’t have the money to fight. I want to send a message to Atlanta landlords that we are not disposable.", stated Jaye.
Right now Jaye is asking folks in the community to support her by doing two things:
1. Can you help cover Jaye's legal expenses? Jaye is a hard working single mom that never thought she would have to take this fight so far. While her lawyer has given her a discount, she still has to pay $2,500. If you can give anything it would be appreciated. Link to donate here.
2. Will you stand with Jaye at her court hearing September 5th at 9am? We are asking folks to were blue in solidarity. Link to event.