National Day of Car Protests to Demand Cancel the Rents! - Washington, DC
Join the National Day of Car Protests to Cancel the Rents in Washington DC!

On Saturday, April 25th cities and towns around the country will mobilize to demand: A national cancellation of all rents, mortgages for homeowners, small landlords and small businesses, for the duration of the Pandemic.

Join the DC branch of the Party for Socialism and Liberation, ANSWER Coalition, Justice First, LinkUp, March for Racial Justice, ONE DC, Stop Police Terror Project DC, Attorney Will Merrifield At-Large DC City Council Candidate, and tenants and homeowners from across D.C. on Saturday, April 25th @ 12pm as we participate in the national day of car protests to demand: CANCEL THE RENTS!

The economy is virtually shut down as it must be to save lives. But massive testing and personal protective equipment are still not available, despite the great productive capacity of the United States. A short-term suspension of evictions is not enough to save people's homes. In a few months when these moratoriums are lifted and the rents come due -- we will still not have the money! And the meager rescue stimulus payments the government provided must be for food, medicine and other essential needs.

As a result of the economic crisis, at least 30 percent of renters were unable to pay their rent on April 1st. No one should lose their housing for any reason in this crisis! The rents and mortgages (including for small businesses) must be cancelled!

It can be done! Since the start of the pandemic in the United States, the federal government has pumped at least 5 trillion dollars into the big banks and the largest corporations. Only $249 billion was allocated for unemployment funding. This massive gift to the banks — the 1% at the top, compared to the 160 million U.S. workers — is 20 times the amount allotted for the unemployed. The money is there, it is simply a question of whether it is used to bail out Wall Street or to protect the homes of poor and working people. This wealth and the vast number of vacant housing units can be used to provide shelter for the homeless as well.

The government has the authority to cancel the rent. In fact, Representative Ilhan Omar has already introduced the Rent and Mortgage Cancellation Act in Congress. But this will be bitterly opposed by the landlords and big banks. The mobilization of the people, done in a socially responsible way, is urgently needed to ensure housing for all. We don’t need an accumulation of debt throughout the shutdown - we need #NoCOVIDdebt and to #CanceltheRents!

We’ll meet at the parking lot of the Carter Barron Amphitheatre, 4850 Colorado Ave NW, Washington, DC 20011.

This is a COVID19-safe, car-only rally. While we and society recognize the First Amendment and the exercise of First Amendment rights as essential, our April 25, 2020 "Cancel the Rents" car caravan will practice the socially responsible regulations outlined in the "stay at home" order, including physical distancing and mask-wearing. We believe that we must act now to defend the essential right of all people to housing during and after the COVID-19 crisis.

Please fill out the registration form so we can best coordinate the car protest. We'll go to the White House and some local sites, and we'll end at the DC Jail to demand the release of prisoners during the pandemic. Remember to RSVP, share the event, and please put a sign that says "cancel the rents" on your car!

WE DEMAND:

1. Immediate cancellation of all rents, mortgages for homeowners, small landlords and small businesses, for the duration of the pandemic. #CanceltheRents #NoCOVIDdebt!

2. Pepco and Washington Gas immediately cancel all gas and electricity payments retroactively to the start of the mandated state of emergency. Make high speed internet a public utility. End all water payments.

3. Clear The Shelters, House People Now! Shelters must be emptied immediately. D.C. government use power of eminent domain and DOPA over vacant buildings, homes, hotels, and all appropriate structures to house the homeless or people in precarious housing situations, including the undocumented and victims of domestic violence.

4. Stop the $346 million tax cuts to D.C. corporations! Redirect the hundreds of millions in subsidies and land giveaways that currently generate no public benefit toward a Green New Deal jobs program to build thousands of permanently affordable social housing units.

5. #decarcerateDC! Immediate release and dignified housing for all people incarcerated in pre-trial detention, non-violent offenders, prisoners over the age of 50, those detained on the basis of immigration status, and those within six months of their release date.

6. Full citizenship rights for all undocumented immigrant workers and their families. Deportation is the most violent form of eviction!
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Are you planning to drive alone or with passengers? (you should only come with people you are quarantining with!) *
Can you make a #canceltherents sign for your car? *
Can you make a short video of yourself telling people why you are participating in the April 25th national day of action to cancel the rent and send it to dc@pslweb.org and post it on social media? *
Will you commit to inviting 3 people you know with cars to the day of action? *
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