Together We Vote

Together We Vote

Media Contact:

Rev. Sammie Evans, People Acting in Community Together


Together We Vote Press Conference 

Tuesday, January 23, 2024 at 11am

Westminster Presbyterian Church (1100 Shasta Ave)

On March 5th, San José will vote for the following offices in the Primary Election: Mayor*, District 2 Council Member, District 4 Council Member*, District 6 Council Member, District 8 Council Member*, District 10 Council Member*

*Seat is currently held by an incumbent.

The impact of this primary election will potentially be very great, as all but two of these offices are held by incumbents. Historically, incumbents often receive enough of the vote to win in the primary–as opposed to going to a run-off in November. This means that most of the city council could be elected by the voters who vote in this primary election. 

Our Together We Vote Coalition believes that our communities are stronger and more just when all people get to participate in decision making and our democracy–especially people who are the most negatively impacted by our current structures and policies. Unfortunately, the most impacted people in our community–poor people, people of color, and immigrants–are either barred from voting entirely or have been disenfranchised to the point that they no longer vote.

We want to change this! 

All are invited to attend our candidate forums. They are nonpartisan, and all candidates running for each office have been invited. The questions will come from the needs and concerns expressed by our community members through our listening campaigns.

Co-sponsors for this work include: PACT, Sí Se Puede Collective, SV Rising, CA Poor Peoples’ Campaign, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, alpha public school

Home is Sacred – SB 567

SB 567–the “Homelessness Prevention Act”–was created by California Senator Maria Elena Durazo to amend the California Tenant Protection Act of 2019, AB 1482.

SB 567 makes explicit some tenants’ rights that weren’t named or weren’t clear in AB 1482. Most important, it makes tenants’ rights around evictions more enforceable. PACT and PICO California endorse this bill–it’s a step in the right direction!

Our research for the past year has included meeting with elected officials, community organizations, housing attorneys, administrators, and more; Consulting regional, county-wide, and city-specific data sources; and Most importantly, we spoke with directly affected families and our allies!

We reached out to 22 faith institutions and schools in order to speak with both renters and homeowners about their housing concerns. Of the over 453 people we spoke to, 43% of us know someone who is at risk of eviction and/or is experiencing homelessness. 52% of us pay more than 30% of our annual income in either a mortgage payment or in rent. 44% of renters have experienced an increase in rent. 39% have had to sacrifice other important things like food and health care to pay rent.

Housing Crisis in Numbers

According to the nonprofit Destination Home, Homelessness is a crisis in Santa Clara County. Santa Clara County is the 4th highest homeless hub in the entire country. Our homeless population includes our neighbors, working adults, and families who are unable to make rent because of the cost of living. Since the end of COVID Tenant Protections, there has been an increase in eviction filings. San Jose requires owners of multi-family properties to submit eviction notices to the city, and the city received 295 fillings in November and 116 in December of 2022. In April of 2022 the city had only 22.

Our Demands

Based on the research we have done, we leaders with PACT have determined that the time is now to pass statewide and local initiatives that will:

  1. Provide tenant protections
  2. Allow affordable housing accessibility to the most vulnerable, in particular those who are undocumented. 
  3. Find new pathways to homeownership
  4. Provide a guaranteed basic income

We know that we can only solve this housing crisis by BOTH providing more accessible housing AND ensuring that our most vulnerable families have access to the resources they need. For this reason, we urge our lawmakers to seek out examples of communities now providing a guaranteed basic income and to turn these examples into innovations that will benefit San Jose and Santa Clara County.


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PACT fosters grassroots organizing to promote a just society.

To advocate for community causes through grassroots organizing, thereby fostering a healthier, more just society and empowering individuals to actively participate in shaping their communities for the better.

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