CONTACT: Carlos Valenzuela, (210)-207-3919
Brandon Frazier, BFrazier@groundedsolutions.org
SAN ANTONIO (July 23, 2019) –The City of San Antonio welcomes community and municipal leaders from Indianapolis and Winston-Salem, N.C. for a two-day learning tour focusing on housing policies for lasting affordability, displacement prevention and neighborhood preservation. The learning tour is part of ‘ForEveryoneHome: City Solutions for Housing Equity,’ an 18-month initiative by Grounded Solutions Network, with support from the Ford Foundation.
“The ForEveryoneHome Initiative is an exciting opportunity for us to deepen our anti-displacement work and partner with the community in a new way,” said Verónica R. Soto, City of San Antonio’s Director of the Neighborhood & Housing Services Department. “We’re looking forward to learning from Grounded Solutions Network’s national experts alongside our team members and the other cities.”
Teams of community-based leaders and municipal officials from each of the three cities will operate as a cohort of equal stakeholders to democratize the policy-making process. The 18-month initiative is designed to engage and support cohort cities’ lower-income residents and communities and help counter the impacts of past policies and practices like redlining, race-based restrictive covenants and predatory lending. Over the course of the two-day learning tour, the teams will participate in racial equity training, workshops on shared equity housing models, and a bus tour of San Antonio neighborhoods.
Soto is part of the seven-person San Antonio team which also includes Mayor Ron Nirenberg, Lourdes Castro-Ramirez, President of University Health System Foundation and Chair of the Mayor’s Housing Policy Task Force; Tuesdaé Knight, President and CEO of San Antonio for Growth on the Eastside (SAGE); Jessica O. Guerrero, Housing Commissioner and Board President of Vecinos de Mission Trails; Graciela Sanchez, Executive Director of Esperanza Peace & Justice Center; and Richard Milk, Director of Policy & Planning for San Antonio Housing Authority (SAHA).
“Rapid growth is accelerating increases in housing prices and threatening to displace residents in changing neighborhoods,” Mayor Ron Nirenberg said. “Thanks to the Mayor’s Housing Policy Task Force report and recommendations, we have moved beyond just talk and are walking the walk!”
Grounded Solutions Network announced the three selected cities, including San Antonio, on June 10th following a competitive application process. City Council approved a $75,000 co-investment in the initiative on June 13th. The City’s investment will be matched twice by the Ford Foundation and cover Grounded Solutions Network’s consulting services.