District  72 Manny De Los Santos              

Will you publicize an endorsement from Met Council Action?  Yes             

Will you pledge to meet with us regularly?  Yes

What type of housing do you live in?  Regulated rental apartment

Are you now, or have you ever been a landlord?  No

If yes, how many units?

Does your campaign accept contributions from real estate developers (including related individuals), corporate lobbyists, organizations that participate in the carceral system, and/or landlords?  No

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

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

If so, how can we be assured you will have tenants’ interests in mind?  

Do you believe housing is a human right? Yes

If so, what does that mean to you?  Housing is a fundamental human right, essential for individuals and families to live with dignity and security. Decommodifying housing means shifting away from treating it solely as a commodity subject to market forces, and instead recognizing it as a basic need that should be accessible and affordable for all.

What actions have you taken in the past to fight for housing justice?  As an Assemblymember, I’ve been deeply committed to addressing the pressing issue of housing affordability and ensuring access to safe and stable housing for all New Yorkers. My legislative efforts have reflected this dedication, as I’ve supported various measures aimed at tackling the housing crisis in our state. I’ve been a strong proponent of tenant protections, such as rent stabilization and anti-eviction measures, to safeguard against displacement and provide stability for renters. Recognizing the urgency of homelessness prevention, I’ve supported programs and funding aimed at providing supportive services to individuals and families at risk of losing their homes. Furthermore, I’ve actively advocated for fair housing initiatives to combat discrimination and ensure equal access to housing opportunities for all New Yorkers.

What are the most pressing housing issues, and what would you do as an elected official to address them?   I recognize that housing issues are among the most pressing concerns facing our community. One significant issue is the lack of affordable housing options, which has led to skyrocketing rents and widespread gentrification, displacing long-term residents and contributing to homelessness. To address this, I will continue to advocate for policies that prioritize affordable housing development, including increasing funding for affordable housing programs, incentivizing the construction of affordable units in new developments, and strengthening rent regulation laws to protect tenants from excessive rent increases and unjust evictions.

Another pressing issue is the quality of housing, particularly in rent-stabilized and public housing units, where tenants often face neglectful landlords and substandard living conditions. As an elected official, I will continue to push for stronger tenant protections and increased oversight of landlords to ensure that all residents have access to safe and habitable housing. This includes supporting initiatives to improve building maintenance and repairs, enforce housing codes, and hold landlords accountable for violations.

Additionally, I will continue to prioritize addressing homelessness by expanding access to supportive services, such as mental health and addiction treatment, as well as affordable housing options for individuals and families experiencing homelessness. This involves increasing funding for shelters and transitional housing programs, as well as implementing policies to prevent homelessness, such as rental assistance programs and eviction prevention services.

Overall, I am committed to continue working collaboratively with stakeholders, including tenants, housing advocates, and community organizations, to develop and implement comprehensive solutions to address the housing challenges facing my district and ensure that all residents have access to safe, affordable, and stable housing.

Have you or anyone close to you (family, friend, etc) been evicted or been threatened with eviction?  No

Have you ever had to fight a landlord for repairs or faced harassment?  Yes

Do you believe that housing should be decommodified? Yes

Please explain your answer. Housing is a fundamental human right, essential for individuals and families to live with dignity and security. Decommodifying housing means shifting away from treating it solely as a commodity subject to market forces, and instead recognizing it as a basic need that should be accessible and affordable for all.

Do you believe in publicly owned and controlled housing?  Yes

What is one rent and/or eviction protection you would enact if you had the opportunity?  Protecting tenants from arbitrary and/or unjust evictions and provide them with greater stability and security in their housing.

Do you agree that all evictions are bad?  Yes

Why or why not?  It’s crucial to emphasize and recognize the systemic injustices embedded within our housing system that often lead to evictions. Too often, tenants face eviction due to factors beyond their control, such as unaffordable rent, substandard living conditions, retaliatory actions by landlords, among other reasons. Our focus should be on preventing evictions wherever possible by addressing the root causes of housing instability, including skyrocketing rents, inadequate tenant protections, and lack of affordable housing options. This includes enacting robust tenant protections, such as rent stabilization measures, eviction moratoriums, and access to legal representation for tenants facing eviction proceedings.

Do you support the concept of universal rent control?  Yes

Do you support the NYCHA 2.0 Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) and other privatization schemes?  No

Please explain why or why not NYCHA serves as a vital lifeline for thousands of low-income New Yorkers, providing affordable housing in a city where housing costs are prohibitively high. I am committed to advocating for policies that preserve and strengthen NYCHA as a vital public asset for generations to come.

What do you see as the best strategies to rectify these problems?  I acknowledge the chronic underfunding, neglect, and disrepair that NYCHA has endured. I am committed to meeting with NYCHA residents and advocates to explore solutions that will revitalize NYCHA and improve the lives of its tenants.

How would you use your office to put pressure on landlords to make repairs and stop harassing tenants?  My office already puts pressure on landlords to make repairs and stop harassing tenants. My constituent services team in my district office actively assists constituents in addressing these issues. We serve as a resource for community members, helping them navigate the complexities of landlord-tenant disputes and advocating on their behalf. Our team reaches out to appropriate agencies and management companies to ensure that issues are addressed and resolved promptly. We also connect tenants to legal resources. When necessary, we escalate matters to hold landlords accountable and ensure that tenants’ rights are protected. By leveraging our office’s resources and advocacy efforts, we strive to create more equitable living conditions for all residents in our community.

Do you support regulating the 300,000 deregulated rent-stabilized apartments? Yes

Will you support increased funding and oversight hearings of DHCR’s Office of Rent Administration to ensure timely responses on overcharge complaints and rent reduction orders for hazardous conditions?  Yes

Do you support stronger penalties against landlords that practice source of income discrimination? Yes

Do you support Good Cause Eviction Protections?  Yes

What will you do to ensure Good Cause gets passed this session?  I will continue to support for the Good Cause Eviction Bill by emphasizing to my colleagues the bill’s importance in safeguarding tenants’ rights. I will continue to meet and collaborate closely with stakeholders such as tenant advocates and legal experts to refine the bill’s language and address any concerns that may arise.

Will you support ending MCIs?  Yes

Will you commit to fully funding the Housing Access Voucher Program?  Yes

Do you support the Tenant Opportunity to Purchase Act (TOPA)?  Yes

How will you support tenants in your district opting into TOPA?  I would collaborate with housing stakeholders, including tenant advocacy groups, affordable housing developers, and local government agencies, to create a supportive environment for tenants opting into TOPA.

Do you support the move to legalize basement apartments and Accessory dwelling units?  Yes

Do you support 421a or Gov Hochul’s proposed 485w?  No

Do you support fully funding the Unemployment Bridge Program (S3192 | A4821)?  Yes

Do you support the vacancy reset bill?  No

Are you committed to making sure every tenant in the state has free access to counsel in Housing Court by fully funding Right to Counsel in 2025’s budget?  Yes

What will you do to ensure that OCA makes proceedings for tenants facing eviction fair by slowing down cases to match the capacity of legal service providers?  Yes

Do you support the creation of a Social Housing Development Authority?  Yes

Do you support legislation to reform the NYC Rent Guidelines Board?  Yes

Do you support the Universal Rent Control bill (to be introduced) – do you support expanding rent regulation to smaller buildings?  Yes

Do you support increasing the Individual Apartment Increases (IAI) allowance?  No