Advocates in Support of Fair Housing Bill

September 26, 2023

The Thriving Communities Coalition (TCC) has long called for a more equitable and systemic approach to planning in New York City to address its growing housing crisis. That is why we took note when Speaker Adams and Council Members Salamanca and Sanchez introduced the Fair Housing Framework legislation in the spring and look forward to seeing this legislation advance with today’s hearing.

As a citywide coalition of non-profit groups working on the frontlines of housing and land use justice, we understand that the multitude of crises facing New Yorkers as they seek to access affordable, safe, and quality housing is fundamentally a function of our City’s broken zoning and land use regime. For marginalized and BIPOC communities, the status quo has led to decades of displacement, gentrification, and the deepening of inequities across not only historic issues like housing, education, environmental racism, and transit access but also future challenges like the effects climate change will have on frontline communities. In our testimony today, members of TCC plan to highlight the following: 

  • The importance of setting equity-focused, nuanced housing production and preservation targets that all communities must meet. 
  • The necessity of ensuring the City uses the right kind of data and methodology to inform its fair housing plan.  
  • The need to improve this specific reform and to go beyond it with further reforms to strengthen community visioning, implementation, and accountability to ensure it succeeds in creating fair housing for all New Yorkers. 

Housing in New York City does not need to be characterized by pain, dislocation, and harm. We can build more fair, affordable, and equitable neighborhoods that work for everyone, that address past and future harms, and that reflect the unique needs and cultural assets of our rich, diverse, and vibrant people. But this will require our City’s leadership to take bold and transformative steps to reform how we plan and utilize land and move us toward equity-focused, comprehensive planning citywide. We commend Speaker Adams and Councilmembers Sanchez and Salamanca for taking this critical first step and look forward to working with the Council in the days and weeks ahead to improve upon and pass this critical reform.

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