Approximately 35% of Americans are likely to lose their homes in the near future if the government fails to intervene. Meanwhile, history has taught us that Wall Street thrives in times like these and is ready to grab up our land and homes when the foreclosure moratorium is lifted. To prevent Wall Street firms from creating artificial scarcities like they did in 2008 by buying thousands of homes and keeping them vacant, Sen. Nancy Skinner introduced SB 1079 last year to reduce land grabs resulting from foreclosure auctions.
Now SB 1079 is law!
We helped add a significant new section to the bill that gives it some actual teeth, and it could be a huge win for tenants, land trusts, local governments, and real estate cooperatives. In brief, if a home is not purchased at auction by someone who will be living in the home (i.e., it’s purchased by profiteers who plan to flip it or manage it as a rental), then there will now be a 45-day hold period in which tenants, potential owner-occupants, nonprofits, cooperatives, and others can purchase the property by either matching or exceeding the auction’s winning bid!
Know your SB 1079 Rights!
This Know Your Rights Workshop will cover the following issues:
✅ History of foreclosures in California;
✅ History of SB 1079;
✅ Case Studies and Strategies;
✅ Next Steps to Fighting Corporate Land Grabs; and
✅ How to buy foreclosed homes.
ASL interpretation and automated closed captioning will be provided.
Alejandra Cruz | Sustainable Economies Law Center
Alejandra is a staff attorney at the Sustainable Economies Law Center. Her areas of focus include the Law Center’s Food & Farm and Community Renewable Energy Programs. She is passionate about racial justice, immigrant rights, and health equity, and comes to the Law Center motivated to work towards achieving economic justice for the communities that are close to her heart. She has worked for various legal services organizations serving low-income communities of color. Her practice areas include consumer law, medical-legal partnership, and immigration law. Throughout her career, Alejandra has taken great care to provide compassionate counsel to people living with disabilities, including mental health and substance use disorders, chronic illness, and intellectual disabilities.
Alejandra’s grandparents came to the U.S. from Mexico and the Philippines and made a home in California. Growing up in California’s Central Valley, she witnessed the exploitation of family members who worked as agricultural and food processing workers. Despite institutional barriers, her parents worked hard so that she could have an opportunity to pursue an education and the career of her choice.
Amy Hines-Shaikh | California Community Land Trust Network
Amy founded Wild Cat Consulting, LLC in June of 2018 after the Janus vs. AFSCME Supreme Court decision to help strengthen labor unions in the wake of right wing attacks. Wild Cat Consulting is most fortunate to have the California Community Land Trust Network as a valued client.
Amy was born in Cork, Ireland and immigrated to Aberdeen, Scotland at the age of three, and then immigrated again to the United States when she was six years old. Her father mixed drilling mud on oil rigs all over the world, which is why she very deeply believes in a just transition for fossil fuel workers to the green economy of the future. Her first concerted organizing effort was a petition targeting the Principal of her middle school to take down the display of a sexist poem in Sandy, Utah. In that case, collective action did not get the goods, but the Principal allowed Amy to display her own feminist poem next to the misogynist one.
After graduating from the University of Utah in Political Science and Women’s Studies, Amy gave herself a graduation present of getting arrested with the Shundahai Network at the Nevada Nuclear Test Site in solidarity with the Shoshone people on Mother’s Day. This was first of many arrests throughout her life for social and economic justice issues. Later that year she went on to graduate school at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst in Labor Relations and Research and got to join her first labor Union – the UAW Local 2322 - and get health benefits for the first time since leaving Europe fifteen years prior.
Amy has worked for many Labor Unions within her career, including the UAW, SEIU, AFSCME, AFT, and CWA. Her latest position was a Legislative and Political Director for a statewide labor union. Prior to that Amy was the Executive Director for another statewide labor union. Amy has many years of experience in all three sides of the “union triangle” - organizing, bargaining, and political affairs.
In 2015 Amy got her second Master’s degree in Organizational Development and Knowledge Management from George Mason University in Arlington, VA. In 2016 Amy joined the Democratic Party to vote for Bernie Sanders in the primaries and hasn’t looked back. She is a delegate for the California Democratic Party and serves on its Legislation Committee.
Amy is also the Contra Costa County co-chair on the Board of the East Bay Women’s Political Alliance, helping to support pro-choice women in getting elected to public office. When not working Amy is spending time with her husband and two children, cuddling her cat and trying to stay safe from COVID 19.
Christine Hernandez | Sustainable Economies Law Center
Christine Hernandez is a proud sister of UNITE HERE! International Union, where she learned to strategize, organize and mobilize. Since moving to the Bay in 2010, she has applied these skills to advance the right to self-determination through her work in job training, food sovereignty and housing justice. In September of 2015, Christine, emboldened by desperation, took possession of a vacant property in East Oakland, to secure housing for her family of 6. In June of 2020, their continued fight and struggle for housing culminated into a rent strike and the collective purchase of a 7 unit house with family, friends, neighbors and the Bay Area Community Land Trust.
Now with secure and affordable housing, and a first hand understanding of the significant impacts of being unhoused and the existing structures that consistently prioritize profit over people and planet, Christine is dedicated to working in collaboration, to create opportunities and expand access, so that others might also secure and maintain this basic human right. She is equally dedicated to the disruption and interference of efforts to displace and dehumanize her comrades and neighbors. Because Christine recognizes that the law has a profound impact on every aspect of life, she is committed to contributing to efforts that make the law accessible to everyone and is delighted to be advancing that objective, as an apprentice with the Radical Real Estate Law School, at the Sustainable Economies Law Center.
Hope Williams | Sustainable Economies Law Center
Hope Wiliams is a legal apprentice at the Sustainable Economies Law Center! She is excited to finally begin her path to becoming an attorney advocate that helps black and brown marginalized communities. Devoted to housing rights and organizing people power to fight the oppressive white supermacist regime, Hope spends most of her time making sure that the law is accessible to the people.
She graduated from San Francisco State University with a bachelors in Political Science. As the Assistant Director of their legal center, she organized events that revolved around housing, immigration, and mass incarceration. During and after school, Hope worked for one of the most powerful unions in the world: Local 2 UniteHere!. They trained her on how to boycott, organize, and agitate. She has been arrested twice with them.
In 2019, after her time with the union she became a campaign organizer for socialist tenant’s rights attorney, Dean Preston. After his win she went on to manage two campaigns at the same time. Carolyn Gold became the very first tenant’s rights attorney to ever be elected to the SF Superior Court. Gloria Berry, a fierce unapologetic black woman, was elected to the San Francisco's Democratic County Central Committee, the governing body of the local Democratic Party.
Outside of having fun learning about the law and working with the amazing people at the Law Center, she works for the Bay Area Community Land Trust, serves as a board member for the Harvey Milk Democratic Club, is a member of the Democratic Socialists of America SF chapter, and organizes with both the Housing Rights Committee of San Francisco and the San Francisco Tenants Union. Secretly, she trains people on how to organize coordinated acts of civil disobedience.
Leslie Gordon | Urban Habitat
Leslie is from the Bay Area and is committed to building more just cities through community-based planning and policymaking. She worked in the non-profit sector in New York City for several years before returning to the Bay Area to earn her master's degree in Urban Affairs from the University of San Francisco. Her master's thesis, "Building a Better Map: Imagining Racial Equity in Oakland," looks at institutional and grassroots visions of racial equity for Black Oaklanders and considers the ways in which urban space could promote "the right to the city" and public benefit rather than private profit. At Urban Habitat, she's a program manager of equitable development, where she works to develop and expand policies that center racial justice at the local and regional levels through building coalitions and supporting advocacy campaigns, researching and writing reports, providing technical assistance to grassroots partners, and running leadership development series.
Teshone Jones | California Reinvestment Coalition
Teshone Jones is the Racial Justice Training and Organizing Manager at the California Reinvestment Coalition (CRC). Before joining CRC, Teshone worked as a consultant supporting groups like Immigrants Rising in exploring community organizing as a tactic for social and policy change work. Teshone began her organizing career a decade ago on the east coast through The Beloved Community Center’s “Greensboro Justice Summer” project working on issues of police accountability and environmental discrimination. She then moved on to work with the Public Interest Network as a Canvass Director, running the ground campaigns of environmental, consumer advocacy, and human rights organizations like the Sierra Club, League of Conservation Voters, state PIRGs, and the Human Rights Campaign. In 2012, Teshone moved to the Bay Area to work with Faith In Action Bay Area as a faith-based community organizer, leading the organization’s on the ground work in San Francisco around Propositions 30 and 47. Through her later work in parent advocacy, she integrated her various organizing experiences in managing, training, and developing other organizers to activate parents in the fight for quality education for low-income, BIPOC communities. From issue-based organizing and advocacy to institution-based organizing, Teshone integrates her range of experiences with a focus on mindfulness, storytelling, and cultural preservation. Teshone studied at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Black Studies. While in undergrad, Teshone studied Spanish extensively, and has also traveled abroad to study in Antigua, Sacatepéquez, Guatemala.
Growing up in the South, Teshone’s experiences with overt racism and injustice shaped her earliest memories. Her life’s work has been fortified by these experiences as well as the sacrifices of ancestors and other way-makers that came before her. Teshone’s organizing career is inspired by her mother’s courageous efforts as an engaged citizen and community advocate.
Tia Katrina Taruc-Myers | Sustainable Economies Law Center
Tia is the Sustainable Economies Law Center’s Director of Legal Education. She organizes the Law Center's teach-ins, webinars, legal cafes, policy cafes, legal beehives, MCLE seminars, online resources, and more! Passionate about redistributing power and wealth, Tia spends her time promoting participatory budgeting and community control of everything.
When Tia's not cooperatizing everything with the Law Center, she plays chess at Alchemy, co-directs the Community Democracy Project to bring participatory budgeting to Oakland, and shoots arrows at targets in Joaquin Miller Park.