News Corner

Many Resident Action Project members are constantly popping up around the state in various publications and community groups.  Scroll through to see what our friends are up to!  Send us updates of all the cool things you’re doing and we will post them here!

This Month’s Political Advocacy in Action

olympia-mindy and james

RAP members Mindy Woods and James Lovelady passing out shovels and flyers to lawmakers

To raise visibility about the need to pass the Capital Budget, members of the Washington Low-Income Housing Alliance (WLIHA) and the Resident Action Project (RAP) flooded the state capital on Jan. 11 with bright yellow hard-hats and small shovels. WLIHA staff and RAP members then distributed these shovels to every lawmaker in Olympia in an effort to drive home how many shovel-ready projects were on the line if lawmakers did not pass the Capital Budget with a strong investment in the Housing Trust Fund.

The need to pass the Capital Budget was particularly pressing given that Washington state lawmakers were unsuccessful in passing the Capital Budget the previous year. However, in part because of the advocacy of RAP members and WLIHA staff, lawmakers passed the Capital Budget with a $106.7 million investment in the Housing Trust Fund the following week. In fact, the advocacy action led to a direct shift in the legislative conversation, prompting one senator to raise the subject of at-risk Housing Trust Fund projects in committee. “It was a powerful day because the shovels showed how much we needed the Capital Budget for more affordable housing, and we definitely need affordable housing in Washington,” RAP Steering Committee Member Lisa Sawyer said.

RAP and WLIHA members distributed shovels to both Republicans and Democrats, and the hard hats and shovels were met with appreciation from both sides of the aisle. “The lawmakers’ aides were thankful that we were there because of all of the hard work we did for affordable housing budgets,” Sawyer said. “All of the aides said that the shovels were a great idea.”

In the Press

Three of our leaders went to Washington DC in July to participate in a rally against HUD’s budget cuts!  Check out what Lisa Sawyer, Kristina Sawyckyi, and Mr. B have to say about their trip here!

Kristina Sawyckyi was featured in the Urbanist a few months ago.  Thank you for telling your story, Kristina.

Lisa Sawyer, a Real Change vendor, wrote a piece for Real Change about her experience at the Washington Low Income Housing Alliance’s annual Conference on Ending Homelessness.  She can add journalist to her repertoire!

Reneè Kimball was chosen by Senator Maria Cantwell to be her Medicaid spokesperson a few months ago. Reneè was also accepted to attend the National Alliance to End Homelessness’s annual National Conference on Ending Homelessness.

Last year, the Resident Action Project was featured in the National Low Income Housing Coalition’s Tenant Talk publication (page 10)!

In the Community

Mindy Woods is part of the Edmonds Housing Instability Coalition where she and other community members are raising awareness of the housing crisis in Edmonds. She got a selfie with Representative Cindy Ryu at their first meeting! Click here to find out more about the group.