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KC Tenants announce 8 demands aimed at addressing rental debt and evictions

Call for meeting with City Manager Brian Platt
KC Tenants
Posted at 12:55 PM, Sep 25, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-25 13:57:36-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — KC Tenants released eight demands on Saturday, which they say will help cancel rent debt and offer solutions to Kansas City, Missouri's, rental assistance program.

The group released the demands during a rally at Manual Technical Center located at 1215 E Truman Road.

"This year, I was able to see the other side of rental assistance, as I worked for Community LINC to help process rental assistance applications for other tenants going through what I am going through," KC Tenants leader Leslie Vaughn said in part in a press release. "There was not enough staff, the number of tenants applying for relief was astronomical, and workers were drowning in applications."

In the demands, the group called for the City to collaborate with KC Tenants in outreach efforts so people have access to the rental assistance program.

They also called for the application process to be simplified and called for transparency from the city on on how the rental assistance money is spent. This includes releasing a weekly report.

KC Tenants also says unspent relief funds should be used to pay down eviction judgments which have already occurred.

It also calls for KCMO to ban landlords from discriminating against tenants for evictions during the COVID-19 pandemic.

In June, the group proposed a "People's Housing Trust Fund," and the new demands released Saturday once again call on City Manager Brian Platt to implement the fund.

The group said it emailed the demands to Platt and are calling on him to meet with the group within the next two weeks.

KSHB 41 News reached out to the City for comment on the demands from KC Tenants.

A spokeswoman pointed to efforts already in place by the City including an emergency assistance center.

They also said the City has distributed nearly 80% of the first round of emergency rental assistance to tenants.

The City hopes the assistance center will help with distributing the second round of funds.

"We also urge landlords to help their tenants fill out the online applications and quickly/easily supply documents tenants need for the application, rather than evicting people," the spokeswoman said in an email. "The City has a productive working relationship with KC tenants and is looking forward to discussing any and all ways we can better serve our communities."