Filed under: Action, Housing, Northwest
Report from home in so-called Olympia, WA that is currently resisting their eviction. For future updates, go here.
Frog House on 10th and Boundary Street, Eastside Stechass on Nisqually and Squaxin territory (so-called Olympia), is set to be evicted by 8am. We are refusing to leave and any attempt at eviction will be met with resistance.
We have not come in protest, we are not on our knees groveling before and begging those in power to be moved by our suffering to “help” us. Rather than passively accept our fate or humiliatingly plead to ears that will not listen, we are standing up with our supporters at our back to secure the means of our continued existence ourselves. It’s the only dignified option.
It was always going to come to this. Our landlord has been talking about selling the house for years and once the pandemic started he made concrete steps to make it happen. We tried to delay it as long as possible to secure some other housing for us but we had, and still have, no options. Rents have continually risen here in Stechass and around the region to unlivable levels as the miserable jobs we shuffle between didn’t even pay enough to make ends meet beforehand. The only other option is to yet again try – and most likely fail again – to get on the waiting list of one of the many god-awful housing nonprofits to maybe sometime between six months and an indefinite number of years from now get into substandard housing in a hyper-controlled and surveilled environment with restrictions on personal behavior that normal tenants are not subject to that are set up to fail people.
People can only take the instability and insecurity, the god-awful anxiety and humiliation so much before they decide to stop taking it all together.
We've been chilling out front with some of our supporters since 7 AM. It's unsure whether the cops will come today or not but regardless it's been nice to enjoy the weather and each other's company this first day.
6 hours past the deadline, no cops all ~vibes~ pic.twitter.com/MzUoC2sC82
— Defend Frog House (@DefendFrog) June 3, 2021
We have been left to fend for ourselves, and nothing has made this clearer than the Covid-19 pandemic where the state and its representatives of both the democrats and republicans, the furthest left and right of them, sacrificed the poorest of us to breath life into their dying economy which – in good times and in bad times – makes us poorer and poorer and robs us of our limited existence. It’s no coincidence that the highest mortality rates were in food and agriculture, transportation and logistics, and manufacturing . They mockingly called us “essential workers” while we took the heaviest losses, but they sure as fuck didn’t give us “essential worker” pay. And that’s only for those of us lucky and fortunate enough to have not gotten laid off.
The only meager protections we were granted was an ever shrinking stimulus that was first and foremost designed as a bailout for landlords to recoup the loss in rent that more and more of us were unable to pay.
The next was the eviction moratorium – a temporary moment of reprieve for many of us. Unless your landlord was selling or moving into the unit, or claimed they were going to do so. But now the moratorium is coming to an end at the end of the month and a wave of eviction looms. With at least 210,000 households in Washington late on rent and faction eviction  and landlords, banks, and speculators gearing up to begin to recoup their losses in the imaginary “post-pandemic” world opening up, the situation is grim.
Good morning! Today, we of Frog House in Stechass (so-called Olympia), as of 8am we are refusing to comply with an eviction order to leave our home. pic.twitter.com/RxfCz8OtCO
— Defend Frog House (@DefendFrog) June 3, 2021
At the core of this crisis is an unsolvable tension between the landed and the landless – between the commodification of housing and the need for shelter, stability, community, and a home. There is no political solution to this crisis as the rights of property owners to speculate on, invest in, buy, rent, and sell land is incompatible with the secured existence and flourishing of all human and nonhuman life. At the end of the day our landlords – big and small – care little for our situation as they are moved by market forces and in turn impose those forces (backed by the violence of the police) on us. We, in turn, care little for their situation as we move to ensure we can continue to live life.
Those very market forces have pushed our landlord into a position where he must cash in on an investment in land, which involves kicking us out with nowhere to go. The needs of human survival and dignity push us to resist this. Our needs and the forces pushing us are inherently contradictory and irreconcilable, it’s that simple.
We intend to stay, we intend to defend our home, we intend to win. We hope those who are facing eviction – whether from a house, apartment, or encampment – see what we are doing and take inspiration, and refuse to go. We hope others will take a strong look at the empty buildings and houses all around us and take initiative to open them u to do what the government is unable to do – house everyone. Either way, know we have your back and we welcome all to reach out to us to coordinate and plan.
NO COMPROMISE IN DEFENSE OF OUR LIVES
EVICTION = DEATH
-Frog House Defenders