Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Empowering people to pursue justice

Empowering people to pursue justice

By MCJ

One of the joys of our work at the Mississippi Center for Justice is getting to know our clients, hardworking individuals striving to improve their lives and care for their families. With generous support from people like you, we have spent 2011 fighting to reform predatory lending practices, to ensure equity in the BP oil disaster recovery and to provide safe, affordable housing for all Mississippians.

Helen Byrd is a vivacious community leader in Indianola, Miss. She is also a resident of South Delta Regional Housing Authority, a mismanaged public housing entity in the Mississippi Delta. South Delta’s complex is comprised of pre-fabricated homes that were built in the 1970’s and span six counties. Over the decades, little was done to maintain the properties, and the homes began to fall apart.

Tenants reported leaky roofs, rotten eaves, cracked floors and shifting foundations, yet few repairs were made. In one home, the front screen door was knocked off by a storm. South Delta never showed up to fix it, but they did send the family a bill for a new door.

When the tenants received notice of rent increases that would have more than doubled rent, without regard to income, Ms. Byrd and others fought back. With the help and support of people like you, the Center was able to file a lawsuit that resulted in a successful settlement that ultimately delivered lower rents and better maintenance for South Delta residents.

Donations from our supporters made our role in this case possible. As we look forward to next year, we need your help to continue serving inspiring individuals like Ms. Byrd. By supporting the Center, you will allow us continue our mission to achieve racial and economic justice for all. Please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to the Mississippi Center for Justice today.

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