We don’t have to tell you that Seattle is in the midst of an affordability crisis. For years, different groups have tried to come up with actionable solutions, but found themselves trapped in protracted disagreements about what we need and how to move forward. The thing everyone agrees on: We need to do something.
Over the last several years, Seattle has taken some significant and important steps, but we still have a long way to go.
One thousand new residents arrive in the Seattle area every week. Housing costs are skyrocketing for both renters and homeowners, and Seattle is facing a serious shortage of affordable-income-restricted homes. Families, workers, and seniors across Seattle are struggling each month to make ends meet, being forced to leave our city, or becoming homeless in growing numbers. Low-income communities and communities of color are being displaced from the city at a rapid rate.
Creating affordable housing requires intricate and involved solutions. We don’t need more delay, unnecessary litigation, or going back to the drawing board at the eleventh hour. Instead, we need mindful, cooperative action informed by experience. We need leaders who know how to build broad and diverse coalitions and implement policy that creates solutions for people across Seattle struggling to maintain affordable and stable housing, and for those who have become homeless. We don’t need slogans, we need action.
Seattle City Council candidate Teresa Mosqueda is that leader. She understands the urgency and complexity of this issue, and she has experience bringing disparate interests together to pass progressive policies that stand the test of time.
During this election cycle, we’ve heard Mosqueda's opponent use slogans and spin that vary depending on the audience, and call for unrealistic Mandatory Housing Affordability proposals—only to admit that they aren’t feasible. While these slogans fit nicely on a bumper sticker—and may be easier to digest than a complex and thoughtful housing platform—they aren’t real solutions. Frankly it is irresponsible and dangerous to call for policies that are proven to fail.
Mosqueda has a track record of working to empower low-income families, workers, and communities of color to share their voice to make sustainable and effective change. This has included leading on expanding health care access to all kids in Washington, regardless of immigration status, raising the minimum wage and providing all workers safe and sick leave, funding paid family leave, and even now working to bring affordable homes to North Beacon Hill as part of the Pacific Medical PDA. She understands we must prioritize and work with those who are most at risk of displacement to create housing and development reflective of community while we accommodate growth.
Mosqueda has extensive, realistic, and creative policy proposals, backed up by research, community engagement, and an understanding of what effective policy requires. To put it simply, Mosqueda is the affordable housing candidate in this race.
As a Seattle council member, Mosqueda will immediately begin work to develop city-owned land parcels into affordable homes for those who need them. She'll prioritize affordable housing development on transit-oriented sites, such as Northgate, Roosevelt, and places near light rail, so that people of all income levels are able to access the jobs, educational opportunities, amenities, and prosperity Seattle has to offer. She’ll expand Housing First solutions that we know end homelessness for people with the greatest needs.
Mosqueda will ensure that public investments in affordable homes foster community—through affordable spaces for artists, small businesses, early learning centers, and public spaces—and reflect the vision and cultures of our diverse communities. We are particularly encouraged by her commitment—in her platform and on the trail—to working with elders to ensure longtime residents are able to stay and thrive in their neighborhoods. She will increase assistance for low-income homeowners and seniors so everyone can stay in their homes, and will work with the community to create senior housing that meets the needs of our LGTBQ community, of immigrants and refugees, and that complements our historically black neighborhoods.
As a woman of color and the only renter on the ballot this November, Mosqueda brings a lived experience that is missing at city hall. She’ll work to expand tenant protections, and she’ll bring tenants together to pass a Tenant Bill of Rights. She’ll put forward legislation giving first right of refusal to purchase multifamily buildings to tenants, creating more accessible homeownership opportunities in Seattle.
She'll hold large developers accountable to communities, ensuring they deliver on affordable housing investments, bring communities and neighborhoods of all backgrounds to the table to prevent displacement, and navigate the City's code, working alongside the mayor and other city council members to enact effective, timely, and legal housing affordability policies. And she’ll be successful because of her ability to collaborate with all of her colleagues and all of our communities.
We know that Mosqueda will successfully lead the charge to implement solutions to the affordable housing crisis in Seattle. She knows how to get things done, and get them done right—in a way that prioritizes those most heavily impacted. Mosqueda knows how to make policy a reality by bringing together diverse interests and voices. This is why housing advocates wholeheartedly support Mosqueda for Position 8 of Seattle City Council.
Nicole Macri, State Representative, 43rd Legislative District
Doris Koo, Former President and CEO, Enterprise Community Partners
Michael Maddux, Tenants Rights/Affordable Housing Advocate
Erin House, Housing Advocate