United Front for Affordable Housing Announces the Opening of the Survivor's Village

Date Published: 
June 3, 2006

See also the photo gallery of the event: http://survivorsvillage.com/photosopeningday.html

When: Saturday, June 3rd, 2006

What Time: 1p.m.

Where: 3800 block of St. Bernard Ave., in front of the St. Bernard Housing Development.

Residents of public housing in New Orleans are demanding the Right of Return for all citizens of New Orleans. Nine months after Katrina, HANO, under the leadership of Alphonso Jackson, Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, has failed to reopen the 7000+ units of public housing that were open pre-Katrina.

Lafitte remains closed, with no work beginning to rehab the units. B.W. Cooper is under partial repair, which still leaves several hundred residents in limbo. Iberville, once home to over 900 families, now has less than 200 families who have returned. Why? Because residents are being harassed by HANO security and personnel on a daily basis as they attempt to return to their units, for which they hold legal leases. St. Bernard Housing Development, along with Florida and Desire scatter sites, are threatened with demolition.

At a time when New Orleans residents are desperate for affordable, safe and sanitary housing, the United Front for Affordable Housing expresses zero tolerance for demolition plans.

Regarding Section 8 vouchers, HANO is placing roadblocks for the return of Section 8 residents, by denying them release from their leases in other cities and states, so that they can return to their rehabilitated apartments in New Orleans.

We say, end the roadblocks. Reopen all public housing!

The Survivor's Village will be constructed by residents of public housing and their supporters, across from the St. Bernard Housing Development, in the 3800 block of St. Bernard Ave.

The Survivor's Village will contain a Tent City to demonstrate the need for affordable housing, a need that HUD and HANO have failed to address. The Village will contain a community center, which will serve as a meeting and organizing location for residents of public housing and section 8, citizens of New Orleans, and community activists from all over the world.

The United Front for Affordable Housing calls on local, state and federal officials to abide by international law, and honor the right of return of Internally Displaced Persons, citizens of New Orleans, citizens of public housing. The United Nations' Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement, Principle 6, states that "Every human being shall have the right to be protected against being arbitrarily displaced from his or her home or place of habitual residence."

The Village will come down when all the people have housing!

For more information, please contact 504-239-2907, or 504-319-3564.

The Right of Return is Everyone's Right!