JCUA in Letter to Rahm: Keep Lathrop Homes Public

JCUA speaks up in solidarity with Lathrop Homes residents in a letter to city officials, stating: Keep Lathrop Homes 100% public housing, and lease up the hundreds of units at Lathrop that are currently vacant.

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Lathrop Homes

Sefer Hasidim (a 12th-century legal text) teaches that “if a community lacks a place of worship and a shelter for the poor, it is first obligated to build a shelter for the poor.”

Since 2010, JCUA has been working directly with residents at the Lathrop Homes public housing development, to empower the voice of the residents in the debate over the future of Lathrop Homes. The future of Lathrop Homes is critical for the following reasons:

  • There are tens of thousands of families in Chicago on the waiting list for public housing.
  • There are tens of thousands more who could not get on the waiting list since it was full and closed.
  • Even with all this tremendous need for housing in Chicago, under 150 of Lathrop’s 900 units are currently occupied. Over 750 units of housing stand vacant in this development alone.

JCUA’s teens with Lathrop Homes resident and leader Miguel Suarez

With the future of Lathrop Homes not clear, JCUA sent a letter to Charles Woodyard, CEO of the Chicago Housing Authority, as well as Mayor Rahm Emanuel, to say: Keep Lathrop Homes as Public Housing, and lease up the vacant units as soon as possible (read JCUA’s letter here).

In this letter we write:

Many members of the Jewish Council on Urban Affairs are deeply concerned about the lack of available housing in the city, for themselves or for their neighbors. With so many thousands of families waiting for public housing, Lathrop Homes must be part of the solution. The CHA is currently revising its Plan for Transformation to create a “Plan 2.0.” This is an excellent opportunity to change your development guidelines for the Lathrop Homes. Please do not miss this opportunity.

If you would like to take action, and raise the Jewish voice on this critical issue, download this letter, and mail it to Charles Woodyard (CEO of CHA). Include a note indicating your support for this position.

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