Al-Hassan Kanu

Al-Hassan Kanu

Twitter: @alkanu Instagram: alkanu

Do you believe housing is a human right? Yes

What type of action have you taken in the past around issues of housing justice? (500 characters)

Public housing residents deserve to live in properly maintained and safe homes; that requires appropriate public staffing levels and capital investment; we certainly need to make the case for federal reinvestment with the change a-coming in D.C., but also fight for state and city funding to maintain this important bastion of affordable housing..

3. What type of housing do you currently live in?              

Unregulated Rental Apt

4. Are you, or have you ever been, a landlord? No

4a. If yes, where & how many apts. did you own?

5. Does your campaign accept contributions from real estate developers (including related individuals), corporate lobbyists, organizations that participate in the carceral system, and/or landlords? Yes

6. Have you ever worked in, or had another affiliation with, the Real Estate industry?  No

7. Have any of your campaign or advisory staff held a position as a corporate lobbyist or an executive role with the Real Estate industry? No

6. & 7. If so, how can we be assured you will have tenants’ interests in mind?  (250 characters)

8. What do you think are the most pressing Housing issues & what action would you take to address them as a City Council Member?  (1000 characters)

I support rent control and rent stabilization; I support state legislation to repeal

vacancy decontrol and to institute home rule on rent regulation. We need to

support and design affordable housing approaches that foster local and community

based economic development which also provide good-paying jobs to people in

the community. Public housing residents deserve to live in properly maintained

and safe homes; that requires appropriate public staffing levels and capital

investment; we certainly need to make the case for federal reinvestment with the

change a-coming in D.C., but also fight for state and city funding to maintain this

important bastion of affordable housing. When I worked in the council we fought

to make housing affordable and address foreclosures; this includes workshops I’ll

continue to educate homeowners.

9. Do you believe that housing should be de-commodified?  I support rent control and rent stabilization; I support state legislation to repeal

vacancy decontrol and to institute home rule on rent regulation. We need to

support and design affordable housing approaches that foster local and community

based economic development which also provide good-paying jobs to people in

the community. Public housing residents deserve to live in properly maintained

and safe homes; that requires appropriate public staffing levels and capital

investment; we certainly need to make the case for federal reinvestment with the

change a-coming in D.C., but also fight for state and city funding to maintain this

important bastion of affordable housing. When I worked in the council we fought

to make housing affordable and address foreclosures; this includes workshops I’ll

continue to educate homeowners.

9a. What would you do as an elected representative to move that vision forward? (500 characters)

Yes

10. Do you support the move to legalize basement apts?  No

11. Do you support the concept of rent regulation and eviction protections? Yes

12. Do you believe in publicly owned and controlled housing? Yes

13. NYCHA has suffered from chronic underfunding, neglect and disrepair. What do you see as the best strategies to rectify these problems?

City Council oversight of spending and most importance tenants involvement.

14. Do you support the NYCHA 2.0 Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD)/ PACT program and other privatization schemes? No

15. Would you support an immediate moratorium on the sale or lease of all City-owned land and air rights to for-profit developers? Yes

16. Would you require that any housing built on public land be 100% permanently affordable to low- and extremely-low income New Yorkers? Yes

17. Would you aggressively use City programs and eminent domain to take ownership of distressed properties and transfer them to community control such as Community Land Trusts?      Yes

18. Would you end the custom of deferring to local council members on land use decisions? No

19. What standards would a rezoning need to meet for you to support it? (500 characters)

I will fight for inclusion in any ULURP matters that include housing, development

components/ employment opportunities; I will insist on affordable housing on any

residential development and hiring locally – and labor – on any projects which occur in

my district.

20. What reforms to zoning would you propose to increase community input into development?  (500 characters)

Air right

21. Would you pass and enforce a true racial impact study as part of any rezoning?  Yes

Percentage of people who are below 200% of the poverty line 50% Percentage of Unhoused New Yorkers  15%

23. What is/has been the most important land use fight in your district and what position did you take on it?  (500 characters)

The building of affordable housing in Hollis and we got it built and I helped families

apply and get settled in those units.

24. Would you support increased funding and oversight of NYC Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) and Mayor’s Tenant Protection Unit to educate tenants on their rights to organize in NYC rental buildings? YesYes

25. Will you support the City seeking injunctions against the landlords on the Right to Counsel’s “worst evictors list,” barring worst evictors from bringing eviction cases while under investigation, and implementing good cause evictions protections? Yes

26. Do you support expanding funding and oversight of the City’s emergency repair program to correct hazardous violations and send the owner the bill? Yes

27. How would you use your office to put pressure on landlords to make repairs and stop harassing tenants?  (500 characters)

I would start with resourcing local right to counsel/ legal assistant and tenant/ housing

support. At to the issue of repairs, I would pursue legislation that where the City would

need to step in and make repairs, landlords would face penalties up to three times the

cost of the repairs.

28. Do you support the Small Business Jobs Survival Act (SBJSA—Int 0737-2018) and Commercial Rent Stabilization bill (Int 1796-2019) currently in committee in the City Council?Yes

29. Do you support converting hotel rooms into permanently affordable apts? Yes

30. Would you end the practice of police responding to people who are homeless?  Yes

31. Would you oppose homeless shelters being built in your district? Yes

31a. Why or why not?  (500 characters)

Southeast Queens is overwhelmed with homeless shelters and homeless families. My

focus would be on serving those families with greater support services and helping them

find affordable housing and jobs.

32. Do you agree that all evictions are bad? Yes

32a. If no, why not?

33. Are you committed to making sure every tenant has free access to counsel in Housing Court? Yes

34. Would you support an eviction moratorium every winter (Heat Season Oct. 1-May 31)?  Yes

35. Do you believe that the Rent Guidelines Board should lower rents for rent stabilized tenants? Yes

35a. If yes, what will you do to influence the board to do so?  (500 characters)
Gather the necessary data, testify, work with advocates, op-eds, and focus on better

appointments to the board in the first place.

36. Have you ever testified on behalf of tenants at a public hearing of the RGB? No

37. Do you support restricting the ability of landlords to discriminate and surveil tenants through the use of technologies such as key fobs, smartphone apps, and facial recognition to gain entry into their apartment units and/or buildings? Yes

38. Will you commit to only vote for a budget that decreases funding to the NYPD? Yes