We all know someone who has been impacted by the waves of greed that have driven our housing crisis. Whether redlining to substandard housing; predatory lending to foreclosure; rent increases to eviction; and speculation to luxury housing, Desley has listened, learned and been a leading advocate to win passage of progressive and proactive housing policies.
In this time of tearing apart our communities through immigration raids, we also need to protect our undocumented immigrant families.
If we are going to provide stable and affordable housing for our current resident as well as welcome new residents, Desley believes Oakland needs nearly 35,000 new affordable homes, NOT market rate housing units. While these new homes get built, Desley knows that Oakland needs policies to regulate and protect the city’s current affordable housing stock.
Desley has been a champion in demanding that banks and venture capital stop investing in Wall Street speculation to turn whole neighborhoods into investment property, but instead push them to provide home loans to lower income people of color; support expansion of the community land trust and invest new affordable housing construction.
Statewide, Desley believes that local cities like Oakland must be allowed to protect and invest in affordable housing by ending State laws that preempt what local cities can do beginning with a November ballot initiative to overturn Costa Hawkins to set responsible rent controls.
Lastly, Desley is building support to hold Mayor Schaaf’s administration accountable to her campaign promises and demand that she invest in addressing the homeless crisis, build the affordable housing, and focus on what Oakland residents need, not her real estate, developer and investor supporters who have undue influence on her office and policies inside City Hall.
Desley’s record of accomplishments proves that she is the hardest working and most energetic councilmember around protecting families from displacement - especially when she led most of the Oakland’s efforts to respond to the foreclosure crisis- but she needs your help to combat this latest wave of displacement.
Desley’s Current Priorities to Deliver on Stability, Affordable Housing Equity and Opportunity
Continuing to Protect ALL of Oakland's Families
Desley has been a leader in protecting immigrant families from displacement and deportation in Oakland.
In January, when ICE threatened to raid Oakland, the Oakland City Council voted unanimously to support Desley and Councilmember Kaplan’s resolution to bar any branch of city government from cooperating with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) before, during or after raids.
Their efforts made National news. You can read about her work in Oakland in Newsweek HERE.
When Trump signed Executive Order 13768 January 27, 2017 to allow deportation of more than three hundred thousand (300,000) previously protected TPS holders, most from El Salvador, Haiti and Honduras, Desley drafted a Resolution calling on the Federal Government to extend Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for all nations currently under the program, and to establish a pathway to permanent residency. For current beneficiaries.
New Development to serve Oakland Residents
Desley is committed to making sure all new developments in Oakland serves Oakland’s residents first in terms of affordability, size, and service. She has achieved this by holding dozens of meetings with residents in the last year to make sure development achieves equal opportunity and equity for her constituents with a focus on youth, families and seniors.
Highlights from Desley’s past accomplishments to achieve housing affordability and stability for Oakland residents include:
Desley was one of the first Council Members to respond during the foreclosure crisis w/policy measures that anticipated and sought to preempt the imminent speculation that occurred when over 13,000 families – many victims of predatory lending - lost their homes in Oakland.
She has been a proactive leader in opening new opportunities for Oakland residents to achieve self-sufficiency and stability by winning new models for community ownership like the Oakland Community Land Trust, an initiative that which guarantees permanently affordable housing.
Desley authored the nationally recognized legislation to hold banks accountable and reduce blight on bank owned properties that resulted in generating more than $3 million in fees.
She authored the program to fund free counseling and legal assistance for families threatened with foreclosure.
In 2015-16, Desley helped force the city to hold landlords accountable by securing over $100,000 to enforce tenant protections who had increasingly become targets of unfair and illegal harassment as property value sky rocketed in Oakland.
Desley was an early and staunch supporter to pass models for tenant protections like Measure JJ to expand Oakland’s Just Cause Eviction Law. In partnership with Council Member Kaplan she helped navigate multiple roadblocks set up by powerful special interest groups and their allies in City Hall to place the policy on the ballot. The result. 75% of Oakland Voters supported JJ in November 2016.
She worked with community partners to establish a revolving loan fund to make sure seniors have access to immediate funding so they don’t lose homes.