Issaquah tenants fight back against unjust evictions

Violeta was losing sleep after her property manager told her she would be kicked out of her home if she let her teenage son continue to live with her. 

Why, after nine years of living in this federally-subsidized apartment building, was Violeta getting 10-day notices to kick out her son? Well, her son had just turned 18, so technically was deemed an unauthorized tenant. The property manager insisted he had caused "issues" like parking slightly outside a parking space. But the image she attached on the notice made this "issue" look confusing to Violeta. How could something so minor warrant an eviction?

That's when Violeta began hearing from her neighbors that they too were getting surprising and unreasonable 10-day notices from the manager. Tenants say, the property manager was doubling their rent, or threatening eviction after a tenant was behind on rent by $1. Yes, one dollar. 

Violeta was joined by one of our organizers when she attended a meeting with the property manager trying to clear up the situation. But the property manager insisted Violeta would need to vacate if she wanted to keep her son at home. When Violeta asked where she was supposed to go, the property manager gave her a list of homeless shelters. 

Violeta took action and worked with Washington CAN to organize her neighbors and march on the property management office. Tenants and advocates delivered their own 10-day notice on April 10, urging the property manager to put an end to Management, and demanding a meeting with Imagine Housing, which owns the building, and FPI Management, which manages the building. 

Craig and his grandmas

Dozens showed up, tenants and advocates, to show their support.  The offices of two congressional candidates for the 8th District, attended to show their support. Candidate Shannon Hader and a representative from Kim Schrier attended in solidarity.  UFCW 21 and PSARA representatives also attended in support. Violeta's son was supported at the action by both of his grandmas, and reporters showed up to cover the story. 

We expect the owners and management company to respond by April 20, but hope they get back to us quickly, since tenants are currently under grave duress, afraid they will lose their homes. Help us put pressure by sharing this story on Facebook and with your friends and neighbors.