The El Sereno Community Land Trust is a group of committed residents and stakeholders who provide opportunities for the residents of El Sereno, Los Angeles to secure community spaces and housing that is decent, affordable, and that is held in stewardship by community members on a long-term basis. We are dedicated to de-commodifying local real estate by acquiring properties that will be held by the land trust in perpetuity for the common good. We also plan to work with residential and commercial tenants that wish to stay in their homes and businesses to help preserve the networks, support systems, cultural and social fabric of our community.
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HOUSELESS ACTIVISTS LEGALLY MOVE INTO CALTRANS HOMES
In the wake of a global pandemic and severe housing crisis,
houseless activists of the Reclaiming Our Homes (ROH) movement – which look to create safe housing during the pandemic – will make another big push to move houseless families and elders into formerly vacant Caltrans-owned homes on November 8.
Since March 2020, the ROH activists, supported by El Sereno Community Land Trust (ESCLT), the Alliance for Californians for Community Empowerment (ACCE), and members from the United Caltrans Tenants (UCT) – have negotiated a solution that allows them to move into several vacant, Caltrans-owned homes in the El Sereno area.
As part of the solution, Caltrans signed a lease with the Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles (HACLA) to operate 22 Caltrans properties in the former El Sereno 710 freeway corridor as transitional housing.
We seek to protect the social fabric of the El Sereno community and resist communal deterioration caused by speculation, neocolonial displacement and capitalist individualization. We foresee reclamation of the land for the community in order to foster autonomy, sustainability and self-sufficiency. We foster the type of community development that preserves, empowers, de-commodifies and decolonizes the community and land.
We intend to serve the community by respecting and strengthening our ancestral indigenous principles and establishing relationships with the original peoples of this land, the Tongva and Chumash nations. We are committed to reclaiming and rehabilitating land in order to improve our quality of life.
In 2017, the Eastside Cafe successfully blocked a sale of the Maycrest building where it is housed, to a speculative developer.
The necessity for a formal structure such as a Land Trust became clear when the Community began to purchase the building. The El Sereno Land Trust was also created out of concern of the growing housing crisis, homelessness and overall gentrification that was taking over Northeast LA residential communities.