Nearly half of the city of San Antonio’s residents are renters, and the cost of renting an apartment in the city continues to rise while wages have stayed mostly stagnant.
For renters with low incomes in a state that grants few tenant protections, their situations can be volatile. They are often more likely to live in unsafe or unsanitary apartments or may be at risk of displacement.”We’re sometimes at the mercy of the landlord,” one tenant told us, describing how she and her neighbors often forgo complaining about conditions for fear of retribution from their landlord.
In the summer of 2019, city council member Roberto Treviño proposed creating a commission of renters to advise the city on tenant issues and housing policy in order to provide a forum for tenants to voice their concerns and be represented in their city’s decision-making processes.
Earlier this month, the Culture and Neighborhood Services Committee voted to move the renters commission forward to gather feedback from community members. A town hall is scheduled for 10 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 29. at San Antonio College.
For episode 25, Texas Housers spoke to council member Roberto Treviño, tenant and organizer Kayla Miranda, and Cynthia Merla Spielman, a landlord and founding member of the Tier One Neighborhood Coalition.
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