The 2023 Community Justice Challenge Week Two Recap: Housing

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The 2023 Community Justice Challenge Week Two Recap: Housing

Categories: Community Justice Challenge, News

During week two of the 2023 Community Justice Challenge, our community explored redlining’s continued impact on housing access and how homophobia, racism, transphobia and other forms of discrimination drive homelessness and its criminalization. This dialogue provided insight into why legislation is essential to ensure all citizens can obtain safe and stable living conditions without discrimination or marginalization. By utilizing this knowledge to inform careful decision-making, we’re learning to create positive change toward justice within our communities with each unified step.

Day Six: Redlining

Week two began with discussions surrounding our nation’s complicated history with redlining. Through a series of readings and videos, our community explored the history of this discriminatory practice implemented in the 20th century. Together, we uncovered its lasting, detrimental effects on Black and other minority communities, nationally and locally, and the work still required to combat its residual effects.

Redlining Resources:

Day Seven: Racism & Homelessness

On day seven of the Community Justice Challenge, we focused on the intersecting topics of racism and homelessness. We leaned into conversations that provided a clear look at how many homeless individuals are disproportionately criminalized due to lack of access to affordable housing, leaving them more vulnerable to profiling and other forms of discrimination. We discussed how racism is a driving force behind homelessness and how this reality reinforces systems of oppression. In addition, we explored the role of domestic and sexual violence in the homeless crisis, as well as our role in ending this cycle in our community.

Racism & Homelessness Resources:

Day Eight: Criminalization of Homelessness

Day eight of our challenge centered on the criminalization of homelessness. We explored how laws that target those without homes exacerbate their suffering and create a cycle of incarceration and displacement which, in turn, affects communities. We looked at local activists rallying for an end to the criminalization of homelessness in Miami and educated ourselves on actions already in motion throughout the country to better protect unhoused Americans.

Criminalization of Homelessness Resources:

Day Nine: LGBTQ+ Community, Homelessness & Housing

On day nine of the Challenge, we focused on the unique challenges faced by the LGBTQ+ community, specifically regarding homelessness and housing. We discussed the disproportionate rate of homelessness amongst LGBTQ+ youth in America and examined how gender identity and sexual orientation frequently leave individuals more susceptible to discrimination in housing and job applications. In addition, we explored stories of change in our community that demonstrate the power of unity and justice-oriented action.

LGBTQ+ Community, Homelessness & Housing Resources:

Day Ten: Access to Housing

On the final day of Housing Week, we discussed how race and discrimination affect access to housing and income in minority communities.  Participants learned how housing market practices lead to unjust undervaluation of minority-owned properties, and we experienced stories of income discrimination (and how to combat these instances).  Together, we discussed how it is our responsibility as community members to advocate for equal access to housing for all individuals in our community, regardless of race or background.

Access to Housing Resources:

Our work to support and provide for the neighbors of our homeless community does not end here. Join YWCA South Florida in creating a truly equitable environment for all its residents by furthering your education and getting involved beyond this week:

Week Three Preview: Music

Are you enjoying the challenge so far? Help us spread the word to those in our community and encourage them to register before next week’s conversations begin. Join us next week to learn more about the legacy of musician activists, the cultural appropriation of music, racism in the industry, music’s place in opposing gender stereotypes and the accessibility of music education.