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Building Our Future: Grassroots Reflections on Social Housing

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    Soaring housing costs and continual economic instability across the country are striking at the core of our communities’ well-being and social fabric. Corporate landlords driven by profit have expanded their control over our homes. And Wall Street investors are gambling on real estate at unprecedented levels, unleashing gentrification, flipping for a profit, and vacancy alongside homelessness in our neighborhoods. Today, millions face the daunting reality of skyrocketing costs and the constant threat of eviction and displacement. The increasing use of housing as a wealth and investment vehicle, the concentration of profit-driven corporate control of housing, and the political and financial retreat of the state are key drivers of our housing affordability crisis. This report, "Building Our Future: Grassroots Reflections on Social Housing," delves into the urgent need for social housing as a radical, transformative, and common-sense solution to our housing crisis. A growing movement of organizers is advocating for permanently and deeply affordable social housing, that is publicly, collectively or non- profit owned and under democratic resident or community control. Through tenant unions, rent strikes, and policy campaigns, groups are demanding public, government intervention to overcome catastrophic market failures and ensure housing for everyone. As the report makes clear, campaigns for social housing are underway across various regions, for example: in California, organizers claim legislative victories such as SB 555, which mandates a government study on social housing; in Seattle, the establishment of the Seattle Social Housing Developer (SSHD) to build publicly owned, permanently affordable housing; and in Kansas City, Missouri, organizers secured a $50 million bond for affordable housing and through mass tenant organizing are shifting towards campaigns for building municipal social housing. This report, crafted by organizers, policy analysts, and educators rooted in housing, racial, and climate justice movements, is intended to serve as a rallying cry and blueprint for transformational housing futures.