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Housing is a gateway to good schools, available jobs, generational wealth and so much more.

…having more housing options is creating for tenants to negotiate lower rents and have more power with respect to their landlords…

Ernest Brown

Board Chair

Ernest is a current Board Member of YIMBY Action, and has been active in the YIMBY movement since 2017. He lives in Oakland and also serves on the boards of the East Bay Young Democrats and East Bay for Everyone. He is a Senior Project Manager at Kaiser Permanente, where he supports the nonprofit’s growth strategy and strategic partnerships. Ernest is a native of Atlanta, GA and a graduate of Emory University with a bachelor’s degree in Political Science and Economics.

My Housing Story

When I moved to Oakland from Atlanta my rent doubled at the same time as my number of roommates did. Until this year, I’ve moved or gotten a significant rent increase every year I’ve lived in Oakland. In my neighborhood I can see the impact having more housing options is creating for tenants to negotiate lower rents and have more power with respect to their landlords.

In that same neighborhood I see direct results of the failure to build enough housing in the growing number of my neighbors who sleep in their cars, in the park, or in the doorways of buildings. Building more housing is not the only solution to addressing their needs, but it is an essential part of the what we must do.

…this movement has found ways to help people impacted by the housing crisis to demand solutions from government at the scale of the problem.

Why I Support YIMBY Action

I continue to be impressed by YIMBY Action’s ability to help people find their civic voice. The policy papers underlying the economic assessment of the YIMBY view have been basically unchanged for the last 30 years. What has changed is that this movement has found ways to help people impacted by the housing crisis to demand solutions from government at the scale of the problem. This is enabled by the fact that it is building a community of these advocates, to remind us that we are not alone in our struggle and are closer to success when we work together.