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Voces de Casa Maria

Pushing for Rent Control in Arizona

7 min read Many cities are looking at rent control as a viable solution to the obscene cost of living and the growing wealth gap that is tormenting working-class people across the United States. Even Tucsonans are seeing rents rise all over the Old Pueblo. Up to a criminal 50% in some cases. Stories circulate of people being displaced and it’s evident on the streets. Homeless camps are emerging and spreading like wildfire.  The blatant lack of affordable housing is increasing the state’s homeless population and leaving countless unsure of how they will make ends meet in the next months. Many Arizona politicians

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Honoring Dr. Martin Luther King’s True Legacy and the Lessons He Taught Us

8 min read Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. remains one of the most prominent icons of American history. Since his death, he’s been canonized as the embodiment of justice and peace in the United States. He is taught in our schools as a leader of the Civil Rights movement and is celebrated every January with a national holiday in his name. Although this recognition is well deserved, it’s important to remember how King was actually treated while he was alive. As well as how he has been sanitized after his death to fit a national delusion of progress and “color-blindness” that works to

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Arizona Tenants’ Rights

< 1 min read Know your rights! In Arizona, there are specific laws that provide protection for tenants. Being informed when you are a renter allows you to know your rights and stand up for yourself when necessary. Visit our website to get a detailed guideline of your rights as a tenant.

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2021 Homeless Stats in Arizona: A Grim Reality

2 min read As we reflect on the past year, let us not forget about the extremely difficult times many people are going through due to the pandemic and a growing housing crisis. We are witnessing more and more people living on the streets, and it shouldn’t be something we turn our head away from and try to ignore. This is clearly a systemic problem and not a problem rooted in individual choice, and solutions to house the most vulnerable people in our society do exist. The following are some statistics we’ve gathered about the grim reality of homelessness in our state right

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Advent 2021

< 1 min read Dear friends of Casa Maria, Thanks for all your past and current support. Several hundred people, including many families, still come here every morning for life-sustaining food. The soup we make is especially famous on the street. We continue to struggle to defend our barrio, aka The City of South Tucson aka Barrio Libre. Gentrification has morphed into the local and national Housing Crisis. Investors are snapping up every available property turning them into rentals and raising the rents big-time. This is creating massive uncertainty, desperation and suffering for many families already on the brink of being displaced. A house

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Barrio Neighborhood Coalition: Letter to Mayor & Council Addressing Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs)

3 min read To: City of Tucson Planning Commission Daniel Bursuck, Planning and Development Services Regina Romero, Mayor Lane Santa Cruz, Ward 1 Councilperson Paul Cunningham, Ward 2 Councilperson Karin Uhlich, Ward 3 Councilperson Nikki Lee, Ward 4 Councilperson Richard Fimbres, Ward 5 Councilperson Steve Kozachik, Ward 6 Councilperson Michael Ortega, City Manager   From: Barrio Neighborhood Coalition   The Barrio Neighborhood Coalition (BNC) has been working tirelessly since 2018 to stress to Mayor and Council and City Staff just how important the issues of gentrification, displacement and housing affordability are.  Through our efforts, there is now a Commission on Equitable Housing and

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The National Housing Crisis is Scandalous… & how it affects South Tucson

3 min read Everyone who is homeless or teetering on the brink of being homeless or even those in this country who have recently tried to buy a house for under $200,000 or even $300,000 knows this is true. Some are making lots of money on the housing crisis. And it amounts to no less than class warfare against the middle class and especially the poor. It’s not magic or bad luck or some invisible hand of the market at work.                 This is about global economic forces whose policies and decisions seep all the way down to my barrio, the City of

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Part Two- “The Great Climate Migration”: How Climate Change Will Affect Food Accessibility in Tucson

2 min read In the recently published New York Times article titled “The Great Climate Migration”, author Abrahm Lustgarten describes several climatic changes that are heavily affecting rural agricultural families and their crops. In Guatemala he describes how drought, flood, bankruptcy and starvation affects rural farmers: “Almost everyone here experiences some degree of uncertainty about where their next meal will come from. Half the children are chronically hungry…”  Lustagarten emphasizes the threat of desertification in Guatemala and other areas in Central America caused by the exacerbation of odd weather patterns like El Niño: “Many semiarid parts of Guatemala will soon be more like

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“The Great Climate Migration”: How Climate Change and US and Mexico Immigration Policy Affects Central American Migration and Immigration According to The New York Times and How We Will Feel These Effects in Tucson.

3 min read In July 2020, The New York Times published an article by Abrahm Lustgarten titled “The Great Migration”. Lustgarten models how certain climatic changes in Central America and U.S. immigration policies will affect rural to urban migration within Central America, and ultimately, immigration to Mexico and the United States. Climate change has affected rural agricultural Central American in various ways including crop blight, drought, and unpredictable storms. Lustgarten describes how these effects leave people in these rural areas unable to sustain themselves financially through agriculture, so they begin to move to large cities like San Salvador in search of opportunity. A

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Fighting for Justice, Liberty, & Peace in Barrio Libre