At the ONE DC office in Shaw on a Tuesday evening, Right to Housing Organizer Patrick Gregoire carefully reads over a drafted email blast about the upcoming People’s Right to Housing Mini-Assembly. He edits the language to make it more accessible and compelling, asking for feedback from others. Members of the Right to Housing Committee have been meeting week after week to build out a city-wide housing campaign, and now it's time to launch summer outreach and base-building.
Sending communications is one of many features of Patrick’s work with ONE DC: his priority is to reach out and connect with people in ONE DC’s base of working class people of color. As the Right To Housing Organizer, Patrick's role is to organize tenants, especially long-time DC residents, to fight displacement, dismantle housing inequities, and end the privatization of housing. Housing being ONE DC's longest standing pillars of organizing, Patrick explains, “the big North Star is to have community-controlled, sustainable, affordable and dignified housing and to pursue models that support that."
|Patrick (fourth from left) at a LEAP workshop|
In order to move towards these goals and connect with the community, Patrick organizes regular 1-on-1 meetings with ONE DC members to connect the values of the organization to their experiences living in DC. “I mean if you don’t have safe dignified housing, what do you have? You can’t focus on your work. Where are you stacking your food if you've got any? We can’t fight for the things we need if we can’t even stay where we are.” he says.
Patrick’s passion and dedication to the fight for equitable housing grew from his experience as a ONE DC member. After coming on staff, he now organizes closely with a dedicated group of ONE DC members and interns that make up the Right to Housing Committee. Several members have been displaced from their own neighborhoods in the District and use their experience to inform campaign strategy. In addition to the housing team, Patrick also works with other ONE DC staff and organizers: “I love being with a diverse cadre of people -- our Shared Leadership Team, our interns, the staff, our general membership -- especially when we have people that are the most impacted by displacement coming together and brainstorming ideas about how we’re gonna fight for our right to housing.”
|ONE DC's Right to Housing Committee connects with the nation-wide Homes for All Movement at a Tenant Power Assembly Training in Minneapolis|
Join with Patrick and tenants in DC to develop a popular education agenda and build our skills so we can fight back against predatory landlords and developers, and create collective power at the People's Right to Housing Mini-Assembly on Saturday July 6! This event is the first in a series of three and will be followed by the People's Right to Housing Freedom School and ONE DC's citywide People's Assembly.
Click here to RSVP