The South Los Angeles Connecting Capital & Community (3C) initiative, led by Genesis LA plans to work across public, private, and nonprofit sectors to address Los Angeles’ housing crisis.
On Thursday, August 24, Genesis LA, in partnership with JPMorgan Chase and the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, gathered with community organizations at the Community Coalition headquarters to announce a new strategy towards increasing housing affordability for Black, indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC) communities across South Los Angeles.
“Today we brought a coalition of stake holders in the housing sector specific to South Los Angeles. Our objective is to find ways to make homeownership more affordable and more accessible and that’s looking at things maybe differently than what typical houses look like in the past,” said Tom De Simone, president/CEO, Genesis LA.
Genesis L.A. is a local, non-profit community loan fund looking to increase housing affordability, stability, and wealth creation. The South Los Angeles Connecting Capital & Community (3C) initiative, led by Genesis LA, plans to work across public, private, and nonprofit sectors to address Los Angeles’ housing crisis with the goal to increase homeownership rates among Black and Latino communities and curb displacement of Black tenants in historic neighborhoods. Los Angeles Councilmember Marqueece Harris-Dawson spoke on the history and solution for the housing crisis.
“Things are looked at in historical context,” said Harris-Dawson, “so the way you find things in this moment, was built over time.”
Harris-Dawson continued, “Capital compounds, it builds over time. Well, oppression does that too. It builds over time until you get to the point where in the most economically productive region in the world, which is what California is, the most economically productive region in the world, somehow, we can’t even house our community.
“That’s an L.A. problem, that’s a Southern California problem, that’s a coastal problem, that’s a Northern California problem — it is all over.
“We all got to look at the way business is being handled and challenge the folks making decisions to do it in a way that allows us to survive and thrive.”
The 3C Initiative team will explore three different strategies that include new construction, preservation, and the acquisition of foreclosed properties with the intent to build a variety of homeownership opportunities beyond traditional single-family ownership models.
“Maybe it’s not a single-family house with a big backyard and a big front yard, but it’s living in a three or four unit building, but owning your unit with your neighbors,” said Simone.
He continued, “Maybe that’s your starter home and maybe someday, you will own a single-family home, but people can’t even get their foot in door now.
“So, we’re really trying to find ways to make it more approachable, more accessible, more affordable and utilizing a lot of the laws that have been changed in California to try and make that happen, but haven’t quite taken place in neighborhoods like South L.A.”
“JPMorgan Chase is excited to make an initial investment in a new model for homeownership for South L.A. residents,” said Corey Matthews, vice president of Global Philanthropy, JPMorgan Chase.
“Our hope is that by bringing this collaborative of anchor partners together, we can envision a new way of building and preserving affordable housing for South L.A. residents.”
The meeting consisted of panels and discussions hosted by the Community Coalition with organizations such as Tenemos que Reclamar y Unidos Salvar la Tierra – South LA (T.R.U.S.T. South LA), Coalition for Responsible Community Development (CRCD), Off Top Design (OTD), and Little Tokyo Service Center (LTSC).
“We believe deeply in the need to lock hands with the community for when we’re trying to invest to overcome a lot of the systemic barriers to having projects get done, changing communities, to getting capital to flow into these neighborhoods,” said Simone.
For more information on Genesis LA, visit genesisla.org. For more information on the Community Coalition, visit cocosouthla.org/