Whose Providence? is DARE's Campaign for Our City.
Rapid gentrification and an increased rate of incarceration is displacing low-income people of color from our communities. The Whose Providece? campaign is a multi-dimensional fight for people-centered, community-controlled development, living wage jobs and housing.
How it began: In 2006 we collaborated with RI Jobs with Justice and the Olneyville Neighborhood Association to conduct neighborhood workshops about a city plan to give away over $60 million in subsidies (through Tax Increment Financing, TIF) to downtown corporations.
We won! The TIF did not pass, and in the process we developed Principles for People-Centered, Community-Controlled Development through neighborhood meetings across the City.
We organized Citywide to win inclusion of our principles into the City of Providence's Comprehensive Plan - the official document which determines what kind of development will take place over the next 5-10 years in Providence. Together with our allies, we were successful in getting the following language included into the City's Interim Comprehensive Plan.
*Enforce First Source - Making it clear that hiring unemployed Providence residents (including those with prison records) is a requirement of any businesses receiving city aid;
*Good Jobs with Benefits: DARE has fought long and hard for living wage jobs. We were able to win the following language in the Interim Plan: "To Attract, retain and expand businesses that pay good wages and provide benefits."
*Green Jobs - We pushed for and won language to "encourage development of businesses that produce products that will further the goal of environmental sustainability;"
*Affordable Housing: DARE applied a great deal of pressure to make affordable housing a priority, and to protect Providence families against displacement and gentrification. The Comprehensive Plan has some language that supports these goals.
Visit the links at the top to learn more about the Whose Providence current campaigns.
Our Right to the City
DARE works regionally and nationally with Right to the City, a national network of grassroots, member led organizations leading the fight against displacement of communities of color, low income people, LGBTQ people and young people from our historic urban neighborhoods. Right to the City creates regional and national impacts in the fields of housing, human rights, urban land, community development, civic engagement, criminal justice, environmental justice and more.