State Assembly 57 Olanike Alabi


Social media: @OlanikeAlabi ms.olanikealabi

  1. What type of housing do you currently live in?
    Limited Equity Coop
  2. Are you, or have you ever been, a landlord?
    1. If yes, where & how many apts. do/did you own?
      New Jersey / 3 unit home
  3. Does your campaign accept contributions from real estate developers (including related individuals), corporate lobbyists, organizations that participate in the carceral system, and/or landlords?
  4. Have you ever worked in, or had another affiliation with, the Real Estate industry? No
  5. Have any of your campaign or advisory staff held a position as a corporate lobbyist or an executive role with the Real Estate industry?
    1. If so, how can we be assured you will have tenants’ interests in mind?  (250 characters) 
      I have lived in rent-regulated and rent-stabilized housing. I challenged a landlord on a rent overcharge matter and won. Lastly, I’m proud to be endorsed by several housing, block and tenant leaders.

Values and Vision

  • Do you believe housing is a human right?
    • If so, what does that mean to you?   (500 characters)      
      In spite of race, class, gender, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, employment, income, etc., EVERYONE has a right to a home and quality living conditions.
  • What type of action have you taken in the past around issues of housing justice? (500 characters)             
    I’ve written letters on behalf of tenants to judges and landlords, attended rallies, signed petitions and engaged in legislative advocacy.
  • What do you think are the most pressing Housing issues & what action would you take to address them as a state representative?  (1000 characters)
    Affordability – Create more housing for low, moderate and middle income levels and reform state housing tax subsidies to work for tenants and not developers. 
  • Legal Representation – Expand and increase funding for Right-to-Counsel.
  • Evictions – Pass Good Cause Eviction and increase funding for rental assistance programs.
  • Have you or anyone close to you (relation, friend, etc) been evicted or been threatened with eviction?
  • Have you ever had to fight a landlord for repairs or faced harassment?
  • Do you believe that housing should be de-commodified?
    • Please explain your answer (500 characters)       
      Housing should be de-commodified because the emphasis should be placed on people over profits and that’s currently not the case.  In essence, having a home should be a “social entitlement and a universal human right” rather than a commodity.  Also, it shouldn’t be subject to a “market system.”  Such a move would be far more beneficial for tenants and not landlords.  Also, it would “restrict the profit of developers and real estate groups” and address “repairs and deter rent increases.”   Government agencies would also adequately respond more to tenants because the influence of special interests would be further limited.
  • Do you believe in publicly owned and controlled housing?
  • What is one rent and/or eviction protection you would enact if you had the opportunity?   (500 characters)
    Good Cause Eviction to prevent arbitrary and capricious evictions.
  • Do you agree that all evictions are bad?
    • If no, why not?   (500 characters)
      While evictions can lead to poverty, in instances of domestic violence, crime, illegal activity, etc, evictions are not bad because they protect individuals in a household or tenants in the building.  In such instances while eviction may be the safer or immediate response, we should ultimately be in search of aiding such individuals and getting them the assistance they need.
  • Do you support the concept of universal rent control?

Overview on Housing

  1. Do you support the NYCHA 2.0 Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) and other privatization schemes?
    1. Please explain why or why not (250 characters)
      It’s a pathway to the privatization of public housing where there is limited accountability.  Also, it doesn’t utilize unionized labor to address repairs, etc.
  2. NYCHA has suffered from chronic underfunding, neglect, and disrepair. What do you see as the best strategies to rectify these problems?             (500 characters)            
    NYCHA is largely reliant on federal funding.  Federal, state and city governments should increase their contributions.  There also needs to be better oversight of management.
  3. Do you support setting aside 15% of all units created in new state-subsidized affordable housing projects for homeless families and individuals?
  4. How would you use your office to put pressure on landlords to make repairs and stop harassing tenants?  (500 characters)
    While publicizing a “Worst Landlords Watchlist” is a start, we must enforce laws that seek to address repairs and tenant harassment and I would use my office do as much.
  5. Do you support regulating the 300,000 deregulated rent-stabilized apartments?
  6. Will you support increased funding and oversight hearings of DHCR’s Office of Rent Administration to ensure timely responses?
  7. How will you ensure people who owe back rent due to COVID are not evicted and do not continue to owe money?   (500 characters)
    We must ensure that the Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) continues to be funded and that eligibility is expanded.
  8. Would you support financial and criminal penalties against landlords and brokers that deny a prospective tenant housing based on using a tenant blacklist?

Current Bills and Campaigns

  • Do you support Good Cause Eviction Protections?
  • If Good Cause is not passed this session, what will you do to ensure it gets passed in 2023?  (500 characters)
    Attend rallies, sign letters and petitions, raise awareness and engage in other forms of legislative advocacy.
  • Will you support ending MCIs?
  • Will you commit to fully funding the Housing Access Voucher Program?
  • Do you support the Tenant Opportunity to Purchase Act (TOPA)?
  • How will you support tenants in your district opting into TOPA?  (500 characters)
    Yes.  It’s about self-determination and stability.
  • Do you support the move to legalize basement apartments and ADUs?
  • Do you support tenants’ right to collective bargaining?
  • Do you support 421a or Gov Hochul’s proposed 485w?
  • Do you support fully funding the Excluded Workers fund?
  • Do you support the “Excluded No More” bill?
  • Are you committed to making sure every tenant in the state has free access to counsel in Housing Court?
  • Will you commit to fully funding statewide Right to Counsel in 2023’s budget?