The Link 2020

The Link: We Need Social Solidarity, Not Just Social Distancing


This edition of the Link includes policy agendas from local coalitions responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as messaging guidance around the health crisis; new data and resources related to the Race-Class Narrative project in the Midwest and Minnesota specifically; articles on tenant organizing at Huntington Place in Brooklyn Park, the vital importance of public transit in this time and the role of social solidarity in combatting public health challenges; virtual events from the Untokening, Pollen and others; and opportunities for action in this moment. Read the Link >

The Link: The Truth About Tenant Protections


This edition of the Link includes a statement on the proposed tenant protections ordinance in St. Paul, along with a myth-busting fact sheet to combat misconceptions and false information on the proposed policies; a new “Pathways to a People’s Economy” toolkit from the New Economy Coalition; an update on the efforts to repeal a Crime-Free Drug-Free ordinance in St. Louis Park; events, jobs and more! Read the Link >

The Link: Actualizing Equity Series Starts this Friday


This edition of the Link includes a tool on “Communicating the Climate Crisis;” our latest Alliance Leader Q&A with Michael McDowell of the West Side Community Organization; new research and analysis on the impact of luxury apartments on surrounding rents and the efficacy of upzoning to boost affordability; a piece from Sayu Bhojwani on “Let’s Get Real About Why Women of Color are So Tired;” events, jobs and more! Read the Link >

The Link: Transit Advocates Push to Decriminalize Fare Evasion in MN


This edition of the Link includes a report from members of Equity in Place on “Barriers to Fair Housing in the Twin Cities Region;” a new funding opportunity to support BIPOC and low-wealth communities working to build power and advance systems change around housing stability; a commentary from the Alliance and partners on “A CPED for the People: Why a Critical Minneapolis Department Needs a Change;” a piece from scholar Ibram X Kendi on “The Other Swing Voter;” events, jobs and more! Read the Link >

The Link: “It’s 2020. Be Bold or Get Out of the Way”


This edition of the Link includes the Equity in Place “5 Pillars of Affordable Housing Policy;” a new infographic on “Factors Impacting the Economic Wellbeing of Asian Minnesotans” from the Coalition of Asian American Leaders; reporting on a statewide rule change to protect tenants from mid-lease rent increases; a commentary from Michelle Alexander on “The Injustice of this Moment is Not an Aberration;” events, jobs and more! Read the Link >

The Link: Equity in Place Releases Policy Agenda


This edition of the Link includes the recently released Equity in Place Policy Agenda; lessons learned around the implementation of New York City’s right to counsel in eviction law; reflections on “Moving Toward Conflict for the Sake of Good Strategy;” analysis on “Democratizing Economic Power to Break the Cycle of American Inequality;” our latest Alliance Member Spotlight, sharing the equitable creative placemaking work of the Asian Economic Development Association; a new podcast from Fresh Energy; events, jobs and more! Read the Link >

The Link: When Does Activism Become Powerful?


This edition of the Link includes a new report from Smart Growth America on “The State of Transportation and Health Equity;” the 2019 Inclusiveness Index from the Haas Institute; analysis on “When Does Activism Become Powerful” from Hahrie Han of Johns Hopkins University; a new blog series from Colorlines featuring Latinx movement leaders, artists and innovators reflecting on identity; and more! Read the Link >

The Link 2019

The Link: Local Leaders’ Fight Against Colorism Takes on Amazon 


This edition of the Link includes a new publication that weaves together poetry, policy and community narrative from Voices for Racial Justice; new reports from CTUL on “Building with Dignity and Respect: The Case for Worker-driven Social Responsibility in the Twin Cities Construction Industry” and the national NAACP on the “Twin Cities Economic Inclusion Plan;” an update (and video!) on the move toward city adoption of the West Side Equitable Development Scorecard in St. Paul; articles on free transit in Kansas City, a new mega-development in Oakdale and a campaign led by the The Beautywell Project, supported by Alliance member organization Sierra Club North Star Chapter, to combat colorism and demand Amazon discontinue the sale of unsafe skin lightening products; events, jobs and more! Read the Link

The Link: $1 Trillion for Green Public Housing?


This edition of the Link includes a new resource on “Notes on a Cultural Strategy”, aimed at storytellers, artists, organizers, cultural strategists, funders, and collaborators who are working to develop cultural strategies alone or as part of organizations and movements; a set of pieces published in the Urban Affairs Journal digging into the impact and implications of eliminating “exclusionary zoning”, including “Democracy, Exclusion, and White Supremacy: How Should We Think About Exclusionary Zoning?“; articles on Rep. Ilhan Omar’s proposed Homes for All Act, the new chief of Metro Transit police, a new Minnesota History Center exhibit that tells stories from a Native perspective; events, jobs and more! Read the Link

The Link: A Native American Alternative to the Harmful Lie of Thanksgiving


This edition of the Link includes articles on “A Native American Alternative To The Harmful Lie Of Thanksgiving,” nine podcasts from Indigenous women and a new Native-developed housing project on East Franklin: a new report and webinar from Right to the City Alliance and Strategic Actions for a Just Economy (SAJE) on “How Opportunity Zones Turn Communities into Tax Shelters”; a short Q&A with Lynnea Atlas-Ingebretson, Metropolitan Council Member for District 6; the Alliance’s public testimony on housing investments in the proposed City of Minneapolis 2020 budget; events, jobs and more! Read the Link

The Link: Actualizing Equity in Advisory Committees


This edition of the Link includes the recap from our Actualizing Equity event on strategies for advisory committees: a new report from Minnesota Housing Partnership on rent increases and other trends in unsubsidized housing in Hennepin County; a new podcast on racial justice organizing from Race Forward; articles featuring member organizations’ efforts to advance affordable housing and protect tenants’ rights in North Minneapolis and Brooklyn Park; reflections from incoming Alliance Executive Director Joo Hee Pomplun; events, jobs and more! Read the Link

The Link: Creating Our Vision for Equitable Housing


This edition of the Link includes a new report from Trust Black Women and Girls Minnesota; the recap from our Actualizing Equity event on “Creating our Vision for Equitable Housing;” a resource on “What to consider when acknowledging you are on stolen indigenous lands;” a research roundup on rent control policies; articles on an “eviction for profit” scheme in North Minneapolis and Native leaders taking back control of their health care; parting words from outgoing Alliance Executive Director Russ Adams; events, jobs and more! Read the Link

The Link: City Leaders Propose Study of Rent Stabilization for Minneapolis


This edition of the Link includes a new report from Race Forward with practical tips for racially equitable communications to broaden the collective responsibility for employment; a policy brief on “Identity Politics: Friend or Foe” from Black Lives Matter global movement cofounder Alicia Garza; an in-depth interview with author Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor, who argues “there’s no housing crisis; it’s just housing under capitalism;” anniversary reflections from the Alliance’s first staffer member; the latest Alliance Leader Q&A with HOME Line’s Ivory Taylor; events, jobs and more! Read the Link

The Link: The Dawn of Climate Fascism; Equity and Smart Mobility, and more


This edition of the Link includes new reports from the Metropolitan Council on “Development Trends Along Transit” and the Institute on Sustainable Communities on “Equity and Smart Mobility;” policy briefs on “Ending Legal Bias Against Formerly Incarcerated People” and “Enhancing Equity Through a Land Value Tax;” articles highlighting the Youth Climate Strike and “The Dawn of Climate Fascism;” events featuring storytelling and the arts; as well as job openings from member organizations Sierra Club North Star Chapter and CAPI ! Read the Link

The Link: Principles for a Just Transition, Progress on Renters Rights


This edition of the Link includes Just Transition Principles from the Climate Justice Alliance; a recent report outlining how rent control can build healthy and stable communities; a new local podcast focused on Money Power Land Solidarity; articles highlighting political organizing by API youth in the Twin Cities, the opening of a business incubator for black women, updates on progress toward the passage of a tenant protections ordinance in Minneapolis and more; as well as events and jobs from our members! Read the Link

The Link: Renters Take Action For Tenant Protections At MHA And City Hall


This edition of the Link includes an in-depth series of essays and explorations from The New York Times observing the 400th anniversary of the beginning of American slavery that aims to reframe the country’s history’ a new “equity screen” for communications created by Nonprofit AF’s Vu Le; updates on the campaign supporting the passage of tenant protection ordinances in Minneapolis; funding opportunities from the Minneapolis and Headwaters foundations; articles from Colorlines, Next City and Streetsblog LA on grassroots organizing, funding innovations for Muslim homeownership and how racist policy has influenced who has access and agency to public space; events and jobs from our members and more! Read the Link

The Link: Renters Respond to “Safe and Affordable Minneapolis” Attack on Tenant Protections


This edition of the Link includes our latest recap resource from the Actualizing Equity series on “Securing Strong Community Benefits;” videos and media coverage of our recent press conference lifting up renter voices against landlord attacks on proposed tenant protections in Minneapolis; announcement of two new Alliance staff members; articles from The Atlantic, Vice and the LA Times on car-dependancy, gentrification and discrimination against immigrants in public housing; events from our members and more! Read the Link

The Link: Alliance Files Lawsuit Demanding Affordable Housing at Region’s Largest Redevelopment Site


This edition of the Link includes our latest Equitable Development Principles & Scorecard case study on a parks development toolkit from the Trust for Public Land; a new BIPOC consultants directory from Nexus Community Partners; articles on the Alliance filing a lawsuit against the City of Arden Hills demanding affordable housing at the Twin Cities Army Ammunition Plant site and opposing the construction of a new parking ramp in downtown Minneapolis; as well as events and job postings from our member organizations! Read the Link

The Link: Anti-Green Gentrification Toolkit


This edition of the Link includes a new toolkit from the CREATE Initiative that provides an intervention in the green infrastructure planning process to lend a critical lens to how and for whom green infrastructure is built; the annual Out of Reach report from the National Low Income Housing Coalition; media coverage and an Alliance video unmasking the entity behind the new “Safe & Affordable Neighborhoods” astro-turfing campaign in Minneapolis; reflections from Julia Freeman in the OUR Alliance blog series marking our 25th Anniversary; events and job postings from our member organizations — and more! Read the Link

The Link: Fewer Theories of Change, More Community Organizing


This edition of the Link includes a recap resource from our May Actualizing Equity event on transit-oriented development; a new report from the Center for Urban and Regional Affairs, “The Illusion of Choice: Evictions and Profit in North Minneapolis,” reflections from adrienne maree brown on “What Your Body Has to Do with Social Change;” commentaries from the Alliance and partners about tenant screening in Minneapolis and evictions in St. Louis Park; events from our member organizations — and two job postings from Rail~volution! Read the Link

The Link: A Mid-Year Check-In on Your Role in the Social Change Ecosystem


This edition of the Link includes resources from Deepa Iyer and Bunny McKenzie Mack on our roles in the social change ecosystem and unlearning oppressive tendencies in leadership; new funding opportunities for affordable housing advocacy and supporting women in environmental justice work; the debut of the OUR Alliance blog series featuring leaders’ reflections on our collective work together over the past 25 years; articles on reparations and racism as a public health crisis; events from our member organizations — and two job postings from the Alliance! Read the Link

The Link: Green Line Cuts Put Spotlight on Met Council Decisionmaking


This edition of the Link includes an Alliance recap and published commentary from Kadra Abdi reflecting on the need for more equitable and inclusive decision-making at Met Council, a new report on “Housing and Economic Growth in the Twin Cities,” an article exploring the community development innovations of late rapper and entrepreneur Nipsey Hustle, community forums in St. Paul and Minneapolis on preventing displacement and more. Read the Link

The Link: Why Density Isn’t Enough


This edition of the Link includes the recap resource from the Alliance’s Actualizing Equity event focused on “Why Density Isn’t Enough,” a member profile on ACER’s Pathway to Citizenship Campaign, a new report on “Making Bicycling Equitable,” articles on the racial equity impacts of housing and transit investments, jobs from the Twin Cities Media Alliance and more. Read the Link

The Link: Equity Advisory Committee Questions Proposal to Eliminate 24-Hour Service on the Green Line


This edition of the Link includes the recap resource from the Alliance’s Actualizing Equity event focused on “New Electeds of Color and Approaches to Policymaking,” a new report from the Center for Urban and Regional Affairs on “Racially Concentrated Areas of Affluence,” articles on the Equity Advisory Committee’s concerns around the proposed elimination of 24-hour service on the Green Line, micro-entrepreneurs in North Minneapolis and more. Read the Link

The Link: Homelessness Spikes by 10% since 2015


This edition of the Link includes new reports on homelessness in Minnesota, rental trends in Minneapolis, and racial inclusion in the regional economy, along with articles about the development of the region’s largest plot of vacant land, the Alliance’s upcoming leadership transition and the inaugural edition of the Frogtown Free Press. Read the Link

The Link: Funding and Resources to Build Resilience and Power


This edition of the Link includes new funding and resources from CURA, Blue Cross Blue Shield and Windcall to support community organizing, highlights an annual report from the National Low Income Housing Coalition that quantifies the dramatic gap between the demand and availability of affordable housing, shares a resource on “How to do a Land Acknowledgement” and more. Read the Link

The Link: YIMBYs, Rent Control, New Met Council and More!


This edition of the Link shares a package of articles from Shelterforce exploring the rise of “YIMBYs” in housing advocacy, a new report from Right to the City quantifying the benefits of rent control, a recap resource from the Alliance’s first Actualizing Equity 2019 event, the Governor’s announcement of the new members of the Metropolitan Council and more. Read the Link

The Link: Recommendations for Met Council Submitted to Governor


This edition of the Link shares the latest report from the Met Council on the production of affordable housing in the Twin Cities, a new documentary revealing Minneapolis’ legacy of racial covenants, a profile of Hope Community and its approach to organizing and housing development, and more! Read the Link

The Link: Gentrification, Upzoning and Testing Hypotheses on Equitable Development


This edition of the Link highlights a new report from the UMN’s Center for Urban and Regional Affairs “The Diversity of Gentrification: Multiple Forms of Gentrification in Minneapolis and St. Paul,” a case study on the use of the Equitable Development Principles and Scorecard by Cycles for Change, a video on an organizing win to electrify Metro Transit buses and more! Read the Link

The Link: Met Council Finalists Announced!


This edition of the Link shares the list of finalists for the Metropolitan Council, a new report on “The Past, Present, and Future of Development along Twin Cities Transitways,” an Alliance member profile on Fresh Energy’s work to advance access and equity, and more! Read the Link

The Link: The Alliance and members are hiring!


This edition of the Link shares job openings at the Alliance and member organizations, as well as resources from a Jewish Community Action workshop on Anti-Semitism and White Nationalism; new analysis from the Met Council on “Visualizing Regional Racial Disparities,” an interactive map of where families with children use housing vouchers and more! Read the Link >

The Link 2018

The Link: Organizing Wins for Affordable Housing and Clean Transit


This edition of the Link highlights organizing wins in affordable housing — including progress towards an inclusionary housing framework in Minneapolis and a funding award for an affordable housing project in Eden Prairie — as well as a win for the electrification of transit in the Twin Cities. Read the Link >

The Link: Evicted Before Convicted in St Louis Park


This edition of the Link includes a special report by Inquilinxs Unidxs por Justicia —Disparate Cities — that examines how housing policy has created a socioeconomic underclass in the Twin Cities and proposes three strategies for redressing these wrongs and creating a more democratic society: a tenants’ bill of rights, tenants’ unions, and housing cooperatives. It also includes a new resource from Enterprise Community Partners that provides “A Framing Playbook for Affordable Housing Advocates” and an article on police in St. Louis Park ordering landlords to evict people from their homes for reported criminal activity even though they were never convicted or charged with a crime and . Read the Link >

The Link: Fostering Communities Of Inclusion In An Era Of Inequality


This edition of the Link includes a new report from the Joint Center for Housing Studies that examines different aspects of the complex and deeply rooted problem of residential segregation and proposes concrete steps that could achieve meaningful change within the next 10 to 15 years. It also includes articles on the growing landlord/tenant wealth gap and the impact of climate change on the Twin Cities. Read the Link >

The Link: Addressing Health Inequities


This edition of the Link includes a new report by researchers at the University of Minnesota, with support from Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota, which examines the impact of health inequities in our state and how those inequities result in lives and dollars lost each year. The report explores the disproportionate prevalence of preventable disease and death within communities of color and the American Indian community. It highlights how addressing these health inequities is an opportunity to stem that tide, while also improving the economic vitality of the state. Read the Link >

The Link: Opportunity Atlas


This edition of the Link includes the Opportunity Atlas, a resource that contains a trove of data on median household income, incarceration rates, and marriage rates, and lets viewers dig down to the Census tract level, showing just how vastly different the future economic prospects of a child can look from one neighborhood to the next. Read the Link >

The Link: Race, Class, and the Outdoors


Factors like socioeconomic status, age, whether a person has a disability, whether or not they own a car, and what languages they speak all determine how easy or difficult it is to survive and recover from disasters like Hurricane Florence. This edition of the Link explores how different identities experience environmental events differently. Read the Link >

The Link: Expanding the Circle of Human Concern


This edition of the Link includes a new study that confirms that people who oppose creating more multifamily housing development tend to speak at public meetings much more often than those who support it. Read the Link >

The Link: Building Wealth, Building Power


This edition of the Link includes a new Pew Research Center analysis of government data that finds income inequality in the US is greatest among Asians. From 1970 to 2016, the gap in the standard of living between Asian people near the top and the bottom of the income ladder nearly doubled. As we know, this income inequality has major social and economic consequences – those with less access to income and wealth experience diminished economic opportunity and mobility and have less political influence. Read the Link >

The Link: Why Is This Happening?


This edition of the Link includes a new study that analyzes Twitter data and finds that racial segregation not only divides us based on where we live, but how we travel around cities for everyday activities like shopping, visiting friends and family, working, or going out to eat. Race is the defining element of this segregation of mobility. Read the Link >

The Link: The Geography of Wellness


Wellness is not evenly distributed. Invisiblized policies and practices determine which neighborhoods are home to pollution and which are environmentally and economically healthy. As we’ve seen, the burden of inequitable land use policies and regulations falls largely on neighborhoods with people of color, indigenous, immigrant, and under-resourced communities, reinforcing environmental harm and poverty and furthering the wellness divide. This edition of the Link includes information about an upcoming event where we will discuss these historical harms to communities and share our vision of equitable land use policies that enrich neighborhoods, connecting residents to a broad set of choices for recreation, shopping, learning, laboring, and living. Read the Link >

The Link: Climate Gentrification and Environmental Racism


Recent threats to environmental protection will have an especially severe impact on people of color and low-income communities, who are disproportionately exposed to environmental health burdens – many of which have roots in intentionally discriminatory land use and housing policies, including residential segregation. This edition of the Link includes a Research & Advocacy Guide from PRRAC that argues for an affirmative new vision of environmental justice protections, supported by an annotated bibliography of sources that describe the scope of environmental racism, its link to housing segregation, and the inadequacy of current protections to keep all of us healthy and safe, regardless of race or income. Read the Link >

The Link: Responding to Xenophobia


This edition of the Link includes the Opportunity Agenda’s values-based messaging guide for use when talking about immigrant families. They recommend lifting up our shared values as a nation, making clear how the separation and incarceration of children is part of a broad approach and ideology that violates those values, and providing specific alternatives and actions that our audiences can take and policymakers must pursue. Read the Link >

The Link: Who Speaks for the Neighborhood?


True community engagement respects communities as experts who define the problems, design the solutions, and evaluate the outcomes. This edition of the Link includes plans to discuss how folks are challenging systems that reinforce the status quo and creating accessible spaces, projects, and processes that allow community members to feel welcomed as their full selves. Read the Link >

The Link: Reclaiming/Reframing Fair Housing


What do we have in common in a city with significant racial disparities in employment, education and other markers of well-being? Can there ever be common ground on land that was colonized? And what do these questions mean for Downtown Minneapolis — one neighborhood in the midst of many in our metropolis? Read the Link >

The Link: Housing Is A Human Right


Every member of our community has a right to an affordable, safe, dignified home. This edition of the Link includes information about plans to explore how that right is denied and disregarded in the face of gendered violence, racism, the (in)justice system, anti-immigrant discrimination, and other forms of oppression. Read the Link >

The Link: What Does Community Control of Land Mean?


Shelterforce put out a call for essays about the meaning of community control of land and gathered responses from residents and researchers, activists and advocates, all over the country. Check out their ideas in this edition of the Link. Read the Link >

The Link: Make Homes Happen


The reality is that affordability is slipping away from Minneapolis. One of five residents is a cost-burdened renter, and average monthly rent has risen 31 percent since 2012. Although affordable units are being added to the market, it’s simply not enough. Between 2000 and 2014, the city is estimated to have lost 11,500 affordable units. Production of affordable housing needs to at least triple just to keep up with annual population growth. Learn how Make Homes Happen wants to address the need for affordable homes. Read the Link >

The Link: Untokening


The Untokening is a multiracial collective that centers the lived experiences of marginalized communities to address mobility justice and equity. They have developed Principles of Mobility Justice, a living document that will change and evolve over time as our challenges and community priorities shift. Read the Link >

The Link: Investigating the Intersections of Issue Areas


The National Fair Housing Alliance filed a lawsuit which argues that Facebook lets landlords prevent certain communities from seeing advertisements of housing for sale or rent, which violates the Fair Housing Act and does not allow the freedom of housing choice that must be a protected human right. This story and more in this edition of the Link. Read the Link >

The Link: Communities Over Commodities


This edition of the Link includes a report from Homes for All and Right to the City that details the deep inequalities low-income and communities of color in our current housing model. It also proposes 5 Just Housing Principles: 1) Community Control, 2) Affordability, 3) Inclusivity, 4) Permanence, and 5) Health and Sustainability. Read the Link >

The Link: Power at the Margins


This edition of the Link covers the Inclusionary Housing Calculator 2.0, The Uneven Gains of Energy Efficiency, Mapping the Conflict Zones Between Sprawl and Biodiversity, and Airbnb and the Unintended Consequences of Disruption. Read the Link >

The Link: Love Your Neighborhood


To catch the eyes of city officials, St. Paul’s Frogtown neighborhood is launching a small area plan in cartoon form. Mychal Batson, an artist who grew up in Frogtown, spoke with hundreds of residents and wrote and illustrated the comic, dubbed SMAPL! (for small area plan). Read the Link >

The Link: When should we call something racist?


This edition of the Link includes a Code Switch podcast episode where a wide variety of people share their thoughts on calling out racism. Read the Link >

The Link: MLK Day and Actualizing Equity


Join us in building a national and local agenda to advance equity! Our focus is on implementing equity policies in the Twin Cities and the greater United States. Read the Link >

The Link 2017

The Link: Trauma, Resiliency, and Racial Healing


The National Day of Racial Healing was established in 2017 by more than 550 leaders from around the United States who want to find ways to reinforce and honor our common humanity and create space to celebrate the distinct differences that make our communities vibrant; acknowledge that there are still deep racial divisions in America that must be overcome and healed; and commit to engaging people from all racial, ethnic, religious, and identity groups in genuine efforts to increase understanding, communication, caring, and respect for one another. Read the Link >

The Link: Human Rights Week and Equity Summit Stipends


The Alliance is pleased to announce the availability of stipend funds for community leaders, advocates, and organizational staff to attend PolicyLink’s upcoming Equity Summit: Our Power. Our Future. Our Nation. This national convening will take place Wednesday, April 11 – Friday, April 13 and is located in Chicago, IL. Read the Link >

The Link: Native Perspectives on Thanksgiving


This Thanksgiving season, the Alliance wants to uplift Native voices and acknowledge our nation’s history of colonization and the attempted erasure of Native communities. Read the Link >

The Link: Met Council Advisory Committee Openings


Join Met Council Advisory Committees on Equity, Land Use, Transportation, and Transportation Accessibility. Read the Link >

The Link: Speech, Belonging, and Mayoral Races


This edition of the Link shares information about mayoral races and includes a resource guide that  presents research-based evidence and perspectives on a range of free speech issues including belonging, framing, coded racial appeals, and a deeper understanding of harm. Read the Link >

The Link: Renter Week of Action and More


This edition of the Link highlights events taking place during Renter Week of Action, a national movement for affordable housing and tenant rights led by Homes for All.  Read the Link >

The Link: Protect Our Homes, State Election Roundup, and More


This edition of the Link highlights the significant racial and gender disparities in evictions. Even controlling for income – which is often unacceptably low for women of color – African-American women are more likely to experience eviction. It also includes information about the Minnesota Coalition for the Homeless’ campaign urging the U.S. Department of Housing and Development to invest in the proven programs that are reducing housing instability in communities across the country.  Read the Link >

The Link: Redefining Affordability, Transit Fare Increase, and More


This edition of the Link includes information about a 25-cent fare increase for local and express buses, light rail and commuter rail, as well as a 50-cent hike for Metro Mobility, a service for disabled people. For a person taking the bus or LRT twice a day five days a week, the increase will cost an additional $130 a year — likely more if other kinds of trips are factored in. Read the Link >

The Link: Support Urban Density


This edition of the Link includes a report on changes in density in major U.S. cities from 2010-2016. The Twin Cities are ranked 28th in density among 51 metros studied, yet our region’s density trendline was in line with the dense and increasingly denser places of the East and West coasts. It also highlights the possibility for higher density at St. Paul’s Ford development. Read the Link >

The Link: Renters Rising


This edition of the Link includes a new report from the National Multifamily Housing Council and the National Apartment Association says that the Twin Cities needs 70,783 new apartments by 2030 to keep pace with demand, assuming current social and demographic trends continue. It also describes why more people are choosing renting over homeownership. Read the Link >

The Link: When Housing is Out of Reach


This edition of the Link includes a recently released report by the National Low Income Housing Coalition found that there is nowhere in this country where someone working a full-time minimum wage job can afford to rent a two-bedroom apartment. It also provides further documentation of the drastic gap between wages and the cost of rental housing. Read the Link >

The Link: Facing Structural Racism


This edition of the Link includes a free, book-length description of corruption in American economic development from Good Jobs First. It also highlights Bob Herbert’s new documentary, Against All Odds: The Fight for a Black Middle Class, which describes the history of structural racism in America and encourages audiences to examine their own roles in maintaining policies, practices, and cultures that continue to harm African-American friends, family, neighbors, and coworkers. Read the Link >

The Link: Homeownership and the Color of Law


This edition of the Link describes the reality of our nation’s subsidized housing system, which largely benefits middle and upper class white homeowners. It also highlights Richard Rothstein’s new book, The Color of Law, which details how federal housing policies in the 1940s and ’50s mandated segregation and undermined the ability of black families to own homes and build wealth. Read the Link >

The Link: Coming Together to Support Transit


This edition of the Link describes the impact of the Transportation Conference Committee’s proposed transit bill on budget, policy, and the Twin Cities community. It also highlights the efforts of Transportation Forward, a coalition of organizations including the Sierra Club, Transit for Livable Communities, and the Alliance, which is bringing community members together to fight against fare hikes and cuts to transit service. Read the Link >

The Link: Visualizing Regional Narratives


This edition of the Link includes a series of maps and data points about the United States’ mega-regions. Understanding economic connections and transportation routes on a large scale can support efforts to improve regional planning practices. Read the Link >

The Link: Mapping Health and Housing by Region


This edition of the Link provides resources for analyzing health disparities and housing markets by city, neighborhood, and county. A Zillow report highlights the racial gap in rental affordability and a Forbes writer explains how huge home mortgage subsidies enable white people to build personal wealth and exclude people of color. Read the Link >

The Link: Understand and Protect Affordable Housing Options


This edition of the Link highlights local manufactured home parks, an affordable option for homeownership that is in jeopardy statewide. Lowry Grove Park in St. Anthony has already been threatened and Arden Manor, a park in Arden Hills, might be impacted by redevelopment at the nearby Twin Cities Army Ammunition Plant. Read the Link >

The Link: Potential Bus Fare Increase, MN State Budget Examined


This edition of the Link highlights Dakota County’s vote to block the dissolution of the Counties Transit Improvement Board. Dissolving the board would allow Hennepin, Ramsey, Anoka, Washington, and Dakota counties to raise taxes and independently control the revenue in their regions, but Dakota County commissioners claim they have only received a 43% return on their investment. Read the Link >

The Link: Know Your Rights


This edition of the Link highlights resources from the community and the ACLU addressing where to find community leadership training, the structure of local government and how to become involved in the 2017 election cycle, and knowing what rights you have and how to act if confronted by immigration agents. Read the Link >

The Link: Results from St. Paul Racial Equity Investigations


This edition of the Link highlights findings from an ongoing investigation by the City of St. Paul into how people of color experience the city. Each city department conducted a data-driven analysis to determine whether services are provided fairly across geographic, racial, and income levels. Results have led the city to change some hiring practices, community outreach, and investment programs. Read the Link >

The Link: MN lawmakers introduce bills to discourage protesters and to require permit and fees to use bike lanes


This edition of the Link highlights articles on activity within the Minnesota legislature. Representatives have introduced House bills intended to discourage protesters from staging demonstrations and to require a permit and fees of bicyclists who intend to use bike lanes within the Twin Cities area. Both bills have sparked debate over the negative impacts they would have on people of color. Read the Link >

The Link: Disbanding Transit Board May Save Transit Funding


This edition of the Link highlights an article exploring how dissolving the Counties Transit Improvement Board could actually increase the funding available for transit projects. Counties would be able to double the sales tax amount collected for transit projects, which would allow several planned improvements to move forward without state funding. The allocation of transportation funds has been a contentious issue between Gov. Mark Dayton and the Minnesota Legislature for the past three years. Read the Link >

The Link: Tenants Mobilize to Demand Change


This edition of the Link features articles exploring what happens when tenants unite for change. A movement spearheaded by United Renters for Justice is drawing attention to rising rents and buildings with substandard maintenance, while other tenants are exploring ways to prevent the manufactured home parks they live in from being sold and redeveloped. Read the Link >

The Link 2016

The Link: Gentrification Debate Heats Up


This edition of the Link includes several articles concerning the loss of affordable housing and the gentrification of Twin Cities neighborhoods. One recent study shows an influx of higher income residents and development across Minneapolis. Combined with decreasing household incomes, the trend is forcing low-income renters out. Read the Link >

The Link: Nonprofit Alliance Results in Real Change for Housing Issues


This edition of the Link includes articles about a new nonprofit alliance between La Asamblea de Derechos Civiles and African Career, Education and Resource Inc. The two organizations initially presented a joint petition to the Brooklyn Park City Council asking for support in tackling livability issues at the Autumn Ridge Apartments, which resulted in some immediate changes for the residents. Now the groups are compiling resident concerns to create a “Civil Rights Blueprint for Housing in the Brooklyns.” Read the Link >

The Link: Initiatives Focused on Increasing Capacity of Women of Color Promise Change


This edition of the Link highlights two community efforts focused on securing racial equality for women in the Twin Cities region. The Community Artists Leadership Initiative builds the capacity of artists of color, LGBTQ artists, and women artists, to secure the funding they need to produce great work. And the Young Women’s Initiative of Minnesota, a new effort involving the Minnesota governor’s office, the Women’s Foundation of Minnesota and the University of Minnesota’s Urban Research and Outreach-Engagement Center, will be the nation’s first-ever private-public union in tackling racial-gender gaps, and will focus on improving the quality of life for women of color, women in Greater Minnesota, women who identify as LGBTQ and women with disabilities. Read the Link >

The Link: Metro Area Projects Advance for Regional Funding


This edition of the Link highlights a Metropolitan Council article describing several Transportation Improvement projects scheduled for construction. The Transportation Improvement Program is a $3.9 billion collection of proposed state- and federally-funded highway, transit, bicycle, and pedestrian projects scheduled to begin between 2017 and 2020. Read the Link >

The Link: Closing the Racial Gaps: Together We Can


The Link features several articles from Living Cities’ new blog series. The series highlights ongoing efforts across the U.S. that show promise of helping close racial opportunity gaps. Efforts across the country range from transforming education to ensuring that health outcomes are not dictated by the color of people’s’ skin. Read the Link >

The Link: Households of Color Left Out of the Income Boom


The latest edition of the Link features an article from the Star Tribune concerning median incomes among households of color. Although family incomes in Minnesota have increased by 3%, black, Asian Pacific Islander, Latino, and American Indian median household incomes in the state did not rise in a statistically meaningful way. Read the Link >

The Link: Plans to Move Forward with the Southwest LRT


The latest edition of the Link includes several articles about plans to move forward with the Southwest light rail transit line. The $144.5 million transitway’s funding gap is officially filled after months of debates between state leaders and intensive effort from regional planners. The Metropolitan Council unanimously voted Wednesday evening to fill the final piece of the project by agreeing to finance $91.75 million in certificates of participation. The Counties Transit Improvement Board and the Hennepin County Regional Railroad Authority will fill the remainder of the gap. These commitments from local partners are instrumental in demonstrating to the Federal Transit Administration that Southwest LRT is viable and has that local agencies can meet their funding responsibilities. Read the Link >

The Link: Red Lake Band Plans Affordable Housing for Tribal Members


The latest edition of the Link includes an article from the Red Lake Nation News about the tribe’s plans to purchase property in Minneapolis and offer affordable housing, retail and leisure amenities to the community. The project site is at 17th Avenue South and Cedar Ave in Minneapolis, approximately 200 feet from the Franklin Station of the Blue Line, and  the gateway of the American Indian Cultural Corridor, home to the largest population of urban American Indian people in Minnesota. Read the Link >

The Link: North Minneapolis Expanding Food Systems Through Urban Agriculture


The latest edition of the Link includes a Twin Cities Daily Planet article about reclaiming food systems in North Minneapolis. Read the Link >

The Link: Legislative Leaders Work Toward Special Session and More


The latest edition of the Link includes an article about terse negotiations between top Minnesota lawmakers over a possible special session of the Legislature. In order to get legislators to agree to the session, Governor Mark Dayton had to abandon a long list of previously held priorities, including $182 million in new bonding projects and nearly $80 million in new spending over the next year. Read the Link >

The Link: Affordable Manufactured Housing and More


The latest edition of the Link includes a study by the Metropolitan Council on manufactured housing within the Twin Cities region. The study found that manufactured housing is often the most affordable option for low-income households, but manufactured housing parks are becoming more scarce. Parks close due to redevelopment pressure, the inability of park owners to maintain aging infrastructure, and road expansions. Freya Thamman, Metro Council planner and co-project manager for the study and pilot program, said, “The future of manufactured housing parks affects the most economically disadvantaged families in the region, so that makes it an important equity issue.”

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The Link: “From Diversity to Inclusion” and More


This edition of Link includes a Plains Dealer article by Janet H. Cho, profiling Verna Myers and her work on promoting diversity and inclusion. Myers’ recent Ted talk on overcoming unconscious biases has over 1.2 million views. “Biases are the stories we make up about people before we learn who they are,” Myers said. They are especially apparent “when things are high-risk, or you have to make quick decisions.” She proposes three actionable methods for overcoming bias: seek out diversity in your social circles, attend events where you are the minority, and confront biases in friends, acquaintances and colleagues.

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The Link: Time Running out for Legislature Bills and More


This edition of the Link eNewsletter includes an article from the MinnPost about what bills the Minnesota Legislature could still pass, and which they won’t. A bonding bill – a $335 million dollar package calling for road and bridge projects, port funding, airport and railroad crossings, and other University and infrastructure projects – still needs at least eight more votes to pass the House. Republicans are also proposing a tax cuts bill, which Gov. Mark Dayton says he won’t sign without the inclusion of tax credits for various groups and projects. Although Transportation talks initially seemed promising, Republicans and Gov. Dayton couldn’t come to an agreement on the allocation of bonds and general fund money.

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The Link: A Crusade to Defeat Dividing Lines and More


This edition of the Link eNewsletter includes a link to a Washington Post article discussing how highways have traditionally been cut through low income and minority neighborhoods. Anthony Foxx, U.S. Transportation Secretary, is launching a crusade to change this practice. “The country is reaching the end of the useful life of a lot of our infrastructure, and we’re going to have to replace and rebuild a lot, so I want people to be thinking about this,” he said.

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The Link: Community Gardens for Connection and Empowerment and More


This edition of the Link includes an article from the Project for Public Spaces discussing the role of community gardens in creating connections and improving quality of life within low-income and minority communities. Among the benefits are increased mental and physical health, natural opportunities for educational programming, and decreased crime and violence within neighborhoods. Additionally, community gardens provide an opportunity for the preservation of unique crops and cultivation techniques.

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The Link: Transit Ridership Up To 85.5 Million and More


In this edition of the Link: a news release from MetroTransit announced that the METRO Blue Line set a new ridership record, with more than 85.5 million rides on buses and trains in 2015. “With two light-rail lines, more than 100 bus routes and a commuter rail line, the Twin Cities is more connected than it’s been in a very long time,” General Manager Brian Lamb said. Initiatives to continue increasing commuter numbers will continue through 2016.

Read the Link >

The Link 2015

The Link: St. Paul Included in Bloomberg Initiative and More


This issue of the Link includes an article about the Bloomberg Initiative, a competitive city improvement program, from the Pioneer Press. St. Paul is one of 21 cities chosen for the “What Works Cities” Bloomberg initiative, a program that pairs cities with outside experts to review data and use those insights to improve public policy and management. Resulting strategies ultimately result in improved services for city residents.

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The Link: Cities Building Community Wealth and More


This issue of the Link eNewsletter includes a link to a free PDF download, “Cities Building Community Wealth.” The report explores why community-based economic development is a growing trend and how it promotes equity, inclusion, and sustainability. The report identifies core beliefs of this new method, and strategies for how city governments can foster community-based economic development within their own localities.

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The Link: HUD Secretary Visits Twin Cities and More


This issue of the Link eNewsletter includes an article in the Star Tribune reviewing the HUD Secretary Julian Castro’s visit to the Twin Cities area. He has made three visits in three months to the area, bringing tensions between affordable housing advocates and developers to the surface. New federal requirements passed in July require cities to analyze and combat housing segregation. “I very firmly believe that HUD has a role to play, that housing has a role to play in ensuring that we effectively give folks a second chance in life,” Castro said.

Read the Link >

The Link: Met Council Establishes New Advisory Committee on Equity and More


This issue of the Link includes information about a new Equity Advisory Committee, established by the Metropolitan Council. The committee will consist of 21 members, including four current Council members. Members will create an annual workplan to discuss policy questions and advise the full Council on implementing equity commitments. The Council will begin recruiting members for the committee in the coming weeks.

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The Link: Push to Restore Lake Calhoun’s Original Name and More


The Link eNewsletter includes a letter to the editor in the Star Tribune, calling to restore Lake Calhoun’s designation to “Bde Maka Ska,” meaning “White Earth Lake.” Letter authors Carly Bad Heart Bull, Kate Beane, and Tracy Nordstrom write, “A return to the original Dakota name (meaning “White Earth Lake”) would honor the area’s first inhabitants, signaling Minneapolis’ evolution as a community composed of many, with visionary citizens willing to understand history, re-frame and move forward together.”

Read the Link >

The Link: Metropolitan Council Honors Community Engagement Steering Committee and More


A resolution honoring the contributions of the Community Engagement Steering Committee was passed during the September 23rd Metropolitan Council Meeting. The resolution recognized the efforts of the Committee to engage underrepresented communities and shape policies and decision making. The Committee contributed greatly to the Council’s Public Engagement Plan, which defines the expectations by which the Council should engage with the region’s residents, and types of policy, planning, and operational decisions that need community engagement. Links to the resolution and Engagement Plan are included within this issue of the Link.

Read the Link >

The Link: Lessons on Infrastructure Development and Gentrification from New Orleans and More


This issue of the Link includes several articles about the redevelopment of New Orleans in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. Now, ten years after New Orleans was decimated, new housing developments abound and new businesses have poured in. However, many historic residents are also low-income families, and these new benefits are financially out of reach. Lessons from New Orleans can be applied to the Twin Cities region as transportation and infrastructures are improved.

Read the Link >

The Link: Solar Energy Project Aims to Bridge Racial Divide and More


This Link eNewsletter includes a piece from MidWest Energy News, with details on an ambitious solar garden project. The solar installation would produce enough energy to fully power 50 to 60 homes. A unique financing twist allows faith-based institutions who are program subscribers to pay more for their subscription, so economically disadvantaged residents are not barred from this opportunity. The installation also provides an opportunity to train north Minneapolis residents for positions within renewable energy industries.

Read the Link >

The Link: Mapping America’s Renters and More


U.S. Homeownership rates have declined to 63.4 percent, the lowest it has been since 1967. This issue of the Link includes a collection of articles providing more insight into this phenomenon. Among other barriers, transportation costs, student loan repayments, and high rental costs make it difficult to impossible for renters to purchase their own home.

Read the Link >

Common Ground Newsletters, 2005-2015

Common Ground Summer 2015


Our summer 2015 edition of the Common Ground includes a feature on our MoveMN work, a story on the importance of community involvement on advisory committees for Light Rail Transit projects, a highlight of our Ladders of Opportunity work and updates on HIRE Minnesota.

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Common Ground Winter 2014


This edition of the Common Ground features a cover story about a historic Transportation Advisory Board vote. In addition, it includes a story on how community groups are building power for transit equity, a report-back from HIRE Minnesota’s work on keeping state contractors accountable to meeting their hiring goals, the North Minneapolis Greenway survey results and more.

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Common Ground Winter 2013


The winter 2013 edition of the Alliance’s newsletter, the Common Ground, tells powerful stories about our current issues and campaigns. It lifts up the work of our partner groups and shows how, together, we are creating opportunities to advance regional equity in the Twin Cities.

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Common Ground Spring 2013


The spring 2013 edition of the Alliance’s newsletter, the Common Ground, features exciting news about Transit for a Stronger Economy campaign, and how the Central Corridor Project exceeded its hiring goals. It also features information about affordable housing investment and the Brooklyn Park subsidy to Target.

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Common Ground Winter 2012


The winter 2012 edition of the Common Ground features a story on a resolution passed by the Minneapolis City Council requiring a racial equality assessment. It also contains information on the Stadium Equity Plan, an upcoming Fair Housing and Equity Assessment overseen by the Metropolitan Council, the Northside Transportation Network, and Federal Environmental Justice policies affecting Transitway Development.

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Common Ground Summer 2012


The summer 2012 edition of the Common Ground details information about our current issues and campaigns and illustrates how the Alliance and our partner groups are creating opportunities to advance regional equity in the Twin Cities.

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Common Ground Fall 2011


The fall edition of the Common Ground details information about the Corridors of Opportunity Community Engagement Team, and shares stories about our current issues and campaigns.

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Common Ground Spring 2011


The latest Common Ground is packed with information about the current political landscape, including the effect of the legislative session on equity issues and the possible impact of a new Metropolitan Council.

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Common Ground Winter 2010


This issue of the Common Ground is devoted to community engagement. Read about how local groups are transforming the way decisions are made in the Twin Cities region by focusing on meaningful engagement of the people who live and work here!

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Common Ground Spring 2010


The Alliance newsletter “Common Ground” features stories about the connections between people, places and issues in the Twin Cities Region. From securing the three missing light rail stations on Central Corridor, to the Harrison neighborhood’s fight against disinvestment, to the benefits of public transportation and the importance of integrating land-use, housing, economic development in our transit planning, to HIRE Minnesota’s work for hiring equity – this edition shares how on all of these issues, communities have been coming together to make development more racially, economically, and environmentally just. Read all about it!

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Common Ground Winter 2009-10


The Alliance newsletter “Common Ground” features stories about the connections between people, places and issues in the Twin Cities Region. From securing the three missing light rail stations on Central Corridor, to the Harrison neighborhood’s fight against disinvestment, to the benefits of public transportation and the importance of integrating land-use, housing, economic development in our transit planning, to HIRE Minnesota’s work for hiring equity – this edition shares how on all of these issues, communities have been coming together to make development more racially, economically, and environmentally just. Read all about it!

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Common Ground Summer 2009


Our latest Common Ground newsletter is all about the intersection between the environment, the economy and equity!

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Common Ground Winter 2008-09


This edition of the Common Ground is dedicated to the issue of regional equity. What does it mean? How do we achieve it? The newsletter features stories about local and national efforts in several different areas: community development, green jobs, resisting gentrification and displacement, and racial equity impact policies.

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Common Ground Spring 2008


The latest issue of the Common Ground newsletter focuses on recent victories for the Alliance and our partner organizations, including the recent passage of the transportation bill over the governor’s veto and the Twin Cities’ first community-based CBA.

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Common Ground Fall 2007


The Fall 2007 issue of the Alliance’ Common Ground Newsletter features stories about the opportunities and challenges presented by mega-developments being proposed in the Twin Cities. Download the newsletter to read about mega-developments in St. Paul, Arden Hills, Brooklyn Park, Minneapolis and to learn about equitable development efforts taking place throughout the region.

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Common Ground Fall 2006


We are pleased to be able to dedicate the latest issue of Common Ground to featuring stories that illustrate an exciting new phase in the Twin Cities’ movement for smarter growth and more equitable development. For the past year, the Alliance has worked to help a broad range of groups — our member organizations and other community allies — to ensure that low income communities and people of color benefit from the large-scale redevelopments in our midst. One of our central strategies has been to elevate and develop the potential of Community Benefit Agreements (CBAs), as a particular tool in a wide variety of locations and circumstances. You can read about CBA’s, digital justice, University Avenue organizing, and much more by downloading the newsletter.

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Common Ground Fall 2005


The Alliance for Metropolitan Stability’s newsletter, Common Ground is now online. Topics included in this newsletter are the Lexington-University Campaign, transit funding at the state legislature, and Community Benefit Agreements.

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