Renters rally outside Holyoke City Hall calling for Mayor Garcia to support tenant protections
Holyoke, Massachusetts, renters rallied at City Hall this week asking Mayor Joshua Garcia to move forward with the creation of an Office of Tenant Protections.
Garcia agreed to create a committee that would explore building an office of tenant protections at a Public Safety Committee meeting two months, but sent a statement Monday saying he's not actually in the position to create an office through the local government.
Katie Talbot, a lead organizer from Neighbor to Neighbor, a community organization who's helping to organize the rally, said the office is meant to implement laws that already exist and, she believes, it is within his power to create it.
"Tenants have been overlooked, have been disregarded, have this mentality of like, you pay for what you get, right? And if you don't like it, move. So I'm never surprised when tenants' quality of life does not take precedent," Talbot said.
Garcia did say he is interested in "supporting an advisory committee for tenants to allow for proactive planning and strategizing on the issue."