Project Save Our Homes, a newly-organized coalition of community activists in the Duluth-Superior area of Minnesota and Wisconsin, work to address the home foreclosure crisis and defend housing rights. When members of Project Save Our Homes met Ann Lockwood in December 2011, the 55-year old mother of three was in imminent danger of losing her home after a major medical crisis and job loss caused her to fall behind on mortgage payments. Activists and neighbors quickly rallied to her cause.
On 20 January, after months of grassroots advocacy, it was announced that Ms. Lockwood will received a no interest refinanced mortgage with low monthly payments that will allow her to stay in her home. Project Save Our Homes gathered more the a thousands signatures on petition to the bank holding the mortgage on Ms. Lockwood’s home and garnered media attention from all four local network news stations.
Bret Thiele, Co-Executive Director of the Global Initiative for Economic, Social and Cultural Rights said that “As Article 25 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights makes clear, housing is a human right! But, like all human rights, it takes social movements – ‘people power’ – to make sure that these rights are respected, protected and fulfilled.” He added that “While this is a great success, we need to continue our struggle so that we can achieve the structural and transformative change we need to ensure that financial institutions no longer see throwing someone out into the street, in other words perpetrating a human rights violation, as some sort of ‘creditor’s remedy’.”
The Global Initiative for Economic, Social and Cultural Rights is one of several sponsors of Project Save Our Homes and early 2012 conducted a “teach in” to introduce housing as a human right and discuss strategies on using the human rights framework for more effective advocacy.
For more information see: http://projectsaveourhomes.