Tuesday, April 20 at 12:30 p.m., the Board of Supervisors will be considering amendments to current laws that will increase protections for renters. Ordinance 4444 was adopted back in 2002 but there has been a series of several mass evictions since then, including some in Isla Vista, that indicate the need for more protections.

Isla Vista Tenants Union (IVTU) has been working on tenants’ rights for over ten years. As the only tenant-rights organization in the county, IVTU has contributed tremendous amounts of time organizing campaigns, advocating and educating tenants about basic legal rights and responsibilities. For over a year now, the IVTU has worked in close partnership with the Rental Housing Roundtable (RHR), a coalition of organizations and individuals in Santa Barbara County working toward social justice issues by addressing the lack of legal protection for Santa Barbara renters.

Our goal is to amend Ordinance 4444 – a Tenants Displacement Assistance Ordinance. Currently, the ordinance only protects tenants displaced as a result of a code violation. We are proposing additional protections for tenants who are displaced as a result of condo conversions, rezoning of land use, demolitions and renovations. Specifically, the RHR is advocating for increasing the minimum eviction notice period from 60 to 90 days, increasing relocation payments for evicted tenants, establishing a process to track evictions and promoting collaboration among community organizations, landlords and public agencies to educate landlords and tenants about their rights and duties.

To make this campaign successful, we must show support and solidarity as individuals and concerned tenants by urging the Board of Supervisors to address the lack of renters’ rights for Santa Barbara tenants.

We need you to come to the Board of Supervisors meeting Tuesday April 20 at 12:30 p.m. to show support. There is also an opportunity for public comment, but most importantly – we need you there in person.

Free transportation will be provided for interested students. Buses will leave on Tuesday from Embarcadero Hall as well as the corner of Abrego Road and Camino Del Sur at 12:00 p.m. and 12:30 p.m. to the Santa Barbara County Administrative Building. Please wear black. Free IVTU T-shirts will be provided to those that arrive by bus. Please come and show your support for this important issue. Thank you.

IVTU meets Wednesdays at 3 p.m. at the IVTU Office, 6550 Pardall Rd., Unit B (above Grafikart).