City Heights coalition bands together to form organized rent strike in response to rent hikes

City Heights rent strike

Tenants in a City Heights apartment were shocked in April to find out their rent would be increasing a total of 75 percent, a hike that would price out many of the buildings occupants. Now, tenants and community advocates are banding together to lead a Rent Strike demonstration in response to the increase.

Scheduled for June 7th, the demonstration is set to begin at 5:30pm at Herbert Ibarra Elementary. Organized under the newly-formed coalition–the City Heights Tenants Association–the group plans to form a call-to-action against numerous rent hikes occurring in the area, many which would be considered illegal under Assembly Bill 1482. If the Rent Strike' strategy is utilized, it will be the first time a local group of tenants have done so since 2017.

Other large cities, such as Los Angeles, have also seen a rise in the use of “rent strikes,” an advocacy tactic consisting of tenants withholding their rent payments to pressure landlords into negotiating rents and maintenance upkeep. Local workshops on how to effectively utilize the strategy have recently been offered by City Heights' East African Community and Culture Center.

"We are on the brink of a humanitarian crisis. We challenge our progressive City Councilmembers to stop the suffering and pain that our working families continue to endure,” read a statement from the San Diego Tenants Union regarding the City Heights rent hike.

City Heights rent strike mobilization