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Solidarity March to Save 1921 Walnut St., and People’s Park
by Lynda Carson (newzland2 [at] gmail.com)
Sunday Apr 25th, 2021 6:43 PM
Video Footage Of The Solidarity March From 1921 Walnut St., To People's Park:
Copy the code below to embed this movie into a web page:
Solidarity March to Save 1921 Walnut St., and People’s Park

By Lynda Carson - April 25, 2021

Berkeley - On Saturday April 24, 2021, a cool breezy spring day, a couple hundred activists, tenants, and supporters of People’s Park and the tenants facing eviction at 1921 Walnut St., in Berkeley, by the UC Regents, united for a Solidarity March. A Solidarity March starting from 1921 Walnut St., heading to People’s Park where they united together with others for another rally with numerous guest speakers.

They all united in solidarity to SAVE 1921 WALNUT STREET and PEOPLE’S PARK from the displacement activities of the U.C. Regents.

During a discussion with longtime tenant Natalie Logusch of 1921 Walnut St., who has resided there for 11 years, she told me that the people started arriving at 1921 Walnut St., around noon on Saturday April, 24, or a little earlier.

After numerous speakers spoke before the crowd at 1921 Walnut, they all started marching in solidarity with the tenants, activists, and supporters of the tenants at 1921 Walnut, and supporters of People’s Park at around 1:00PM.

They walked and marched all the way to People’s Park for a rally to save their housing, and People’s Park from the on-going threats of bulldozers, and the evil forces of displacement.

Natalie Logusch said, “It’s been pretty crazy this past year. Its been over a year since we were notified that the U.C. Regents want to force us out of our housing to tear it down, and covert it into housing for the students at U.C. Berkeley.

There are still 9 to 11 tenants/residents who are residing at our building at 1921 Walnut, and during the covid-19 pandemic some of the tenants lost their jobs, and had family members who have passed away. Its all been very stressful on us to feel threatened with losing our housing during the pandemic.

They are threatening to evict us from our housing as soon as the eviction moratorium is over.

There were around 10 speakers in total who spoke in front of our residential building at 1921 Walnut St., and at People’s Park yesterday. It was a wonderful large gathering of people. There were a couple hundred of us who united for a Solidarity March in front of our building at 1921 Walnut St., and then we headed down Shattuck Ave, and made our way towards Peoples’ Park, Logusch said”

Additionally, according to Logusch, “The tenants at 1921 Walnut St in Berkeley are long-term, rent-controlled tenants. Several tenants have lived here for 20+ years. UC purchased our building with the intent to evict us, displace our community and demolish our homes in order to build market-rate, student-only housing. UC has countless acres of vacant land they can build their student housing on (such as Clark Kerr campus) and they do not have to displace our communities and permanently destroy affordable housing stock in Berkeley in order to build student housing. In fact, their original plans for the Anchor House included building student housing AROUND 1921 Walnut St and preserving our homes. So it makes no sense for UC to displace our community. We must protect and preserve existing affordable housing, while also building new housing. We can do development, without displacement. UC's plans are unethical and impractical and show a blatant disregard for the community in which they operate. UC is placing profit over people. It is time for the people of Berkeley and the people of California to hold UC accountable. 

 The tenants at 1921 Walnut St have strong support from the community. Berkeley Mayor Arreguin, Berkeley City Council, Sierra Club, Berkeley Rent Stabilization Board, Berkeley Architectural Heritage Association, the UC students through the ASUC, Berkeley Tenants Union, Tenant and Neighborhood Councils and countless other community organizations have officially supported us ( see statements of support here https://www.save1921walnut.org/supporters). It is time that UC listen to the community and stop all plans to evict tenants at 1921 Walnut St or destroy the building. 

 We must stop UC now, because if UC is allowed to gobble up rent-controlled buildings in order to destroy them and build their market rate hosuing - UC will do this throughout Berkeley and throughout California. This would set a dangerous precedent for renters and city jurisdictions across California. 

 If a private developer purchased 1921 Walnut St, they would have to follow Berkeley rent ordinances and replace the units on a 1 for 1 basis. Since UC is a public university, it has special privileges. UC's plans with 1921 Walnut St is an abuse of those privileges. Our public university should not be evicting rent controlled tenants and displacing communities, with our taxpayer dollars.”

Save People's Park:

Additional information to save People’s Park may be found at the People’s Park website.

At the People’s Park website about yesterday’s event it states, “End the UC’s displacement, gentrification, and violence!

Protect community, protect history, protect People’s Park and 1921 Walnut Street!

The University of California, Gov. Newsom and their billionaire cronies is trying to evict tenants of 1921 Walnut Street, a rent-controlled building, and destroy affordable housing in Berkeley, California to create student dorms. The UC is also trying to destroy People’s Park, an open space, center for arts and culture, mutual aid, and poor people in the East Bay. We say NO!"

That's right! The tenants at 1921 Walnut St., & the folks trying to save People’s Park need your support!

Food Not Bombs is a long time supporter of the poor people needing some food at People’s Park.

Lydia Gans, a longtime former member of Food Not Bombs, recently mentioned to me that she was very happy that the people trying to save People’s Park, have united in solidarity with the tenants facing eviction at 1921 Walnut St.

More about the plight of the tenants at 1921 Walnut St., and the efforts to save their housing may be found by clicking here.

-Lynda Carson may be reached at newzland2 [at] gmail.com

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Links to video footage of April 24, rally at 1921 WalnutBy Lynda CarsonSunday Apr 25th, 2021 7:42 PM
Photos of April 24, rally to save 1921 Walnut & People's ParkPosted by Lynda CarsonSunday Apr 25th, 2021 6:57 PM
Photos of April 24, rally to save 1921 Walnut & People's ParkPosted by Lynda CarsonSunday Apr 25th, 2021 6:56 PM
Photos of the April 24, rally to save 1921 Walnut & People's ParkPosted by Lynda CarsonSunday Apr 25th, 2021 6:53 PM
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