Affordable Housing Campaign Update


CONTEXT: In June 2016 Justice United affirmed and supported Orange County’s goal to build or improve 1,000 units of affordable housing in our county over the next five years.

Our strategy is to organize the latent power of our institutions through Justice United and bring our own land and funds to the table - as well as inviting the University and Hospital to follow our lead and anchor new affordable housing development on public and faith owned land, starting with St. Paul Village.

Justice United’s first action in this effort was to get the $5 million affordable housing bond passed. During our September 15 Assembly JU leaders pledged to deliver 2,640 YES votes for the bond - a non-partisan effort that proved crucial to passing the referendum by the highest margins in history.

PROPOSAL: Broaden our power base and develop an organized constituency with the capacity to bring top University and Hospital leaders to the table to follow our lead and invest in affordable housing.  

  • Deepen our relationship with UNC employee organizations to explore joint organizing campaign to locate affordable housing investment within University’s self interest.  

  • Partner with low income constituency organized through the Interfaith Council, Community Empowerment Fund. At least 27 CEF members and 238 IFC clients are UNC employees.

More information will be available at our February 23 Leaders Meeting 

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Maps Presented at June 16 Countywide Leaders Meeting

DRAFT maps showing Faith / Public / Non-profit owned land in Orange County. To be further developed this summer. 


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Introducing Affordable Housing Campaign


POLITICAL CONTEXT:  Orange County’s knowledge economy (anchored by UNC Chapel Hill and UNC Health Systems) has created clear economic winners and losers. 759 full time University employees and 1,503 full and part time Hospital employees earn less than amt. needed to afford 1 bedroom in Chapel Hill. Housing affordable to extremely low income residents has been reduced by roughly half, and 30% of all OC tenants pay 50% or more of their total household income on rent.

PROPOSAL: Tackle affordable housing shortage by helping to develop or improve 1,000 units of affordable housing across Orange County, starting with St. Paul Village.

Faith institutions organize the latent power of our institutions through Justice United and bring our own land and funds to the table.

Invite University and Hospital to follow our lead and anchor the development of new affordable housing on faith, non-profit, and publicly owned land:

1) the St. Paul Village project owned and led by St. Paul AME Church; 2) other land owned by local faith institutions or by members of those institutions; 3) publicly owned land (local municipalities, county, state gov.) in Orange County (like the 103 acres that comprise the Greene Tract in North Chapel Hill or the many smaller county parcels in Northern Orange); 4) land owned by non-profit affordable housing providers;  5) University and Hospital owned land.

Organize constituency of low income residents and low wage workers to improve substandard housing stock and win more resources and protections for tenants and homeless people.

JU leaders will unveil our affordable housing vision on during the 300 person September 15 public assembly, and will turn out 600 people at a winter action to win more substantial commitments from decision makers.  

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