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"Photo: Bob Bland, Center for Popular Democracy."
"Photo: Bob Bland, Center for Popular Democracy."

Marchers on Saturday gathered in Center City to demand housing for all and an end to fossil fuels

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Septiembre 22, 2023

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Close to 2,000 members of the Center for Popular Democracy as well as Philadelphia based affiliates CASA, Make the Road PA, OnePA and other allies gathered on Saturday to march on City Hall to call for a significant investment in nationwide green social housing that’d address the U.S.’s current climate-exacerbated housing insecurity crisis and for action from local elected officials. 

Climate change has increasingly threatened housing security for low-income communities and people of color. Many of those who protested have seen large increases in rent payments, particularly during the pandemic. 

Center for Popular Democracy and CPD Action Executive Directors Analilia Mejia and DaMareo Cooper spoke at the rally alongside CPD and CPD Action affiliate leaders and organizers, West Philadelphia Councilwoman Jamie Gauthier, and State Senator Nikil Saval. 

"Marched with thousands of my fellow tenants this weekend to demand reforms to the landlord-tenant officer and housing justice. Physical violence during an already-traumatic process is unacceptable. Councilwoman Kendra Brooks and I will keep fighting to ensure evictions are performed safely!" said Gauthier in a tweet. 

Organizers, which included many from Philadelphia for CPD’s 2023 People’s Convention that also ended on Saturday, also demanded President Biden End the Era of Fossil Fuels, with a 120 foot banner that read: “President Biden: End Fossil Fuels." 

“Climate change is the single biggest threat we face as a society, and everything we must do in the future — from ensuring housing is a human right to ending economic inequality — depends on what we can do now to solve the climate crisis,” said Analilia Mejia, co-Executive Director of the Center for Popular Democracy and CPD Action. 

“President Biden has a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to declare a climate emergency and make critical investments in climate resiliency, green jobs and energy, and housing for all. If we don’t take that opportunity, we risk dooming millions of working people to a future where climate change exacerbates our country’s inequities, floods our homes and businesses, and makes climate refugees of our children.” 

President Biden, who made fighting climate change a big piece of the Inflation Reduction Act, was called on by organizers to declare a climate emergency and end the nation’s dependence on fossil fuels so that the country does not see any more worst effects of climate change that affects mostly the working class and low income communities of the U.S. 

“The best time to act on climate change was decades ago—and the second best time is now,” said DaMareo Cooper, co-Executive Director at the Center for Popular Democracy and CPD Action. “Our campaign focuses on the urgency of that timeline. We need transformative climate action immediately, and that means investing in green social housing for all, investing in green jobs, and ending our reliance on fossil fuels. Change can’t wait, and neither can we.”

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