Richmond, VA - On April 25, 2022 at 1 p.m., New Virginia Majority (NVM) organizers will gather and protest with Southwood Apartments tenants at 1200 Southwood Pkwy, the Southwood leasing office. This protest comes after the Richmond Times-Dispatch released a 19-minute documentary and article that documented the horrific living conditions of many tenants of Southwood Apartments in December 2021.
A few apartments were renovated and repaired, yet four months later, the vast majority are untouched. Now, supporters will sign on to a letter demanding that the owner of Southwood Apartments, Seminole Trail Properties, implement a plan to bring all 1,300 units up to code standards. Seminole Trail Properties has repeatedly failed to address mold and rat infestation, creating an unhealthy environment for children and adults, who are majority working-class Latinx immigrants.
During the rally, tenants and supporters will share the ongoing struggle to secure housing with dignity. Maria López, a Southwood Apartments tenant said, “We want a decent place to live. We have been living in bad conditions for a long time; we call the office and they do not answer us. We want repairs to be on time. We believe that there is power in unity and we hope that now management will answer us.”
“We have had to see how our Latino families live in conditions that put their health and safety at risk, which could be gradually resolved with proper maintenance. Living among mold, broken floors and ceilings, damaged appliances, mice and cockroaches is something inhuman all the while paying such high monthly rents,” said Claudia Arevalo, an NVM community organizer.
To speak with an NVM organizer or a tenant, contact Debra Freeman at [email protected] or 757-452-1143.
New Virginia Majority builds power in working-class communities of color, in immigrant communities, among LGBTQ people, women, youth, and progressives across the Commonwealth. We organize for racial and economic justice through large-scale political education, mobilization, and advocacy around dozens of issues. We fight for a Virginia that is just, democratic, and environmentally sustainable.