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Rent is Due: Developing Solutions for California’s Rental Cliff

Wednesday, August 19, 2020 -
12:00pm to 1:00pm PDT
Zoom Webinar
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Before the COVID-19 pandemic, California was struggling with a deep housing affordability crisis. Now hundreds of thousands more renters are at risk of eviction and homelessness as eviction moratoria and unemployment insurance benefits expire, and unemployment rates continue to rise. Black, Latinx, immigrant, and undocumented households, who already had the highest housing cost burdens, are also experiencing a disproportionate health and economic impact from COVID-19, putting them most at-risk of losing their homes.

What policies and strategies can be adopted quickly to keep renters housed? What role can philanthropy play to support lasting change that creates equitable housing for all Californians? 

Join our panel of local, state, and national experts for a discussion of:

  • How to address renters’ short-term needs including policies, strategies, and programs that will help renters remain in their homes
  • Opportunities to re-think long-term housing policies including eviction reforms, tenant and community-ownership, and ending rent-burdens permanently
  • How philanthropy can support a range of community organizing, advocacy, policy, messaging, and investment strategies to create lasting change.


María Guadalupe "Lupe" Arreola, Executive Director, Tenants Together

Lupe’s passion for tenants’ rights expands almost 20 years. She is a former tenant organizer and Director of Counseling Programs at St Peter's Housing Committee (now Causa Justa::Just Cause) where she worked from 2001 to 2008 counseling and organizing mostly Latinx tenants in San Francisco’s Mission District. She went on to work as a Housing & Public Accommodations Investigator with the SF Human Rights Commission and as a Contract Compliance Officer for the City & County of San Francisco. Lupe served on the Board of Director for Tenants Together since its founding in 2008 and was hired as Executive Director in March 2019.  Lupe is a proud Xicana, daughter of Mexican immigrants, dog mom, and graduate of UC Berkeley with a BS in Ethnic Studies w/ a concentration on Native American Studies.  

Ruby Bolaria-Shifrin, Director, Housing Affordability, Chan Zuckerberg Initiative 

Ruby Bolaria-Shifrin is Director of the Housing Affordability program at the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI). CZI is dedicated to finding solutions that make housing more affordable so people from all backgrounds and income levels can live, work, and thrive in California. Prior to CZI, Ruby worked in real estate development as a project manager for multifamily mixed income projects in San Francisco and has experience in commercial real estate. She also worked internationally at the Housing Department in Johannesburg, South Africa where she managed an in-situ upgrading pilot project. She started her career as an organizer for environmental and social justice organizations like Earthjustice, Corporate Accountability International and UAW. Ruby, a Bay Area native, has a strong commitment to equity and social justice and brings her unique mix of advocacy and technical experience to CZI's housing work. She holds a BA in Politics from the University of California, Santa Cruz and a Master of Urban and Regional Planning from the University of California, Los Angeles.

Chione L. Flegal, Managing Director, PolicyLink

Chione leads an extraordinarily committed team working to promote social, economic, and environmental equity in California. With deep expertise on issues of infrastructure, land use, housing, and environmental policy, Chione has nearly 20 years of experience building coalitions and leading policy campaigns to improve outcomes for low-income communities and communities of color in California. Prior to joining PolicyLink, Chione managed Latino Issues Forum’s Sustainable Development program and directed the organization’s environmental health and justice work. She has worked as a consultant for organizations in the United States and abroad including, CARE International and the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations. Chione currently serves on the climate justice working group for the California Natural Resources Agency and on the board of directors of Housing California. She holds a master’s degree in city planning and a BS in environmental science, policy, and management from the University of California, Berkeley.

Monique King-Viehland, Director of State and Local Housing Policy, Urban Institute (moderator)

Monique King-Viehland leads efforts to catalyze Urban’s vast housing policy expertise into actionable strategies for, and with, state and local housing leaders. Her portfolio extends across Urban, encompassing a range of housing policy areas from homelessness and affordable housing to zoning reform, homeownership, and housing finance. She previously served as executive director of the Los Angeles County Development Authority (LACDA) where she oversaw 580 employees and a budget of $600 million. She enhanced LACDA’s efforts to fight the homelessness and affordability crises, including a 10-fold increase in affordable and supportive units funded and increasing project based rental voucher commitments by more than 100 percent. She is a member of the LAHSA Ad Hoc Committee on Black People Experiencing Homelessness and a member of the Policy Advisory Committee for the California Roadmap HOME 2030 initiative. She graduated with honors from Smith College and has a master’s in public policy from Carnegie Mellon.

Vanessa Moses, Executive Director, Causa Justa :: Just Cause

Vanessa Moses is a powerful Black leader in the Bay Area and the Executive Director of Causa Justa :: Just Cause (CJJC). Vanessa has a long track record of building the power & leadership of working-class communities: previously as CJJC’s Co-Director of Programs for 12 years, and before joining the organization. Vanessa trained at the National School for Strategic Organizing with the Labor/Community Strategy Center and Bus Riders Union in Los Angeles. She has served as co-chair of San Francisco Rising, and in 2016 Vanessa’s leadership led to the formation of Bay Rising, a regional alliance of community-led organizations working to address the crisis of inequality throughout the Bay Area and statewide. Vanessa was also one of the co-creators of Bay Resistance, a multi-sector rapid response network of over 50 organizations.

Target Audience

This program is open to everyone.  

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