housing action
The Week in Housing Advocacy


Michele Thomas, Director of Policy and Advocacy

Activity in Olympia heated up this week with a lot of new bills introduced and with hearings and lobby days that drew massive crowds. The halls were once again packed, and people from all walks of life sat in hearing rooms and testified on bills that touch on an incredibly diverse set of issues.


Getting By With A Little Help From Our Friends

Marty, who is also the executive director of the Yakima-based Office of Rural and Farmworker Housingexplained to the committee how important it is for affordable housing that serves very low-income populations to have access to operations and maintenance (O&M) support, a need that may go unmet because the state’s O&M account is strapped. You can hear his testimony below:


More Movement on the 72-Hour Notification Rule for Homeless Youth in Shelters

This week also saw some incredible movement on one of our support Items. SB 5147 by Senator Jim Hargrove, which will fix a sunset of the 72-hour notification requirement of youth shelters, continued its impressive progress when it passed the Senate floor unanimously. This is exciting and no doubt a result of the excellent work that youth advocates have been doing to educate elected officials on the need to address youth homelessness.


And Now, the Bad News

On the down side, a whole slew of bills were introduced that would dismantle fundamental protections for Washington’s tenants. Many of the bills seek to weaken eviction protections and one, SB 5062 would even allow landlords and neighbors to seek the arrest of tenants who they accuse of unlawfully residing in a rental home.

The Housing Alliance will be weighing in on all such bills in an effort to ensure that this legislative session doesn’t result in a weakening of our already too fragile tenant protections.




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