Recordings & Resources from Homeowners Workshop

Thank you to our participants and speakers who joined our homeowners workshop on Mon 11/16! We apologize for the mid-presentation interruption, and invite you to watch the recordings of all the scheduled speakers and their presentations below.

Each presentation is linked separately with times provided so you can go directly to the topics of most interest to you. We hope you find this information useful. Please contact the event organizer at sara@lunited.org if you have any questions or would like to connect further with any of the speakers!

Lawrenceville Homeowners Workshop

Presentation 1 (begins at minute 04:35 seconds) : Jeremy Carter, URA – Mortgage & Rental Assistance + Tangled Titles 

Presentation 2 (begins at minute 00:03 seconds): Andrew Shull, Action Housing – Home Weatherization, Utilities Assistance & LIHEAP Program

Presentation 3 (begins at minute 11:48 seconds): Grace Orsatti, Duquesne University Law Clinic – Estate Planning, Health Directive and Free Wills Prep Clinic (presentations accompanied by current law students representing the clinic)

Presentation 4 (begins at minute 32:12 seconds): Ed Nusser, City of Bridges Community Land Trust – Buying & Selling a Home through a Community Land Trust to Access + Preserve Affordability 

Lawrenceville Farmers Market – Season Extension!

In case you missed it – the Lawrenceville Farmers Market Season has been extended until December 15. We’re now open 3:00 – 6:00 pm every Tuesday in Arsenal Park, with 3:00 – 3:30 reserved for those disproportionately impacted by COVID-19.

We have over 22 vendors selling fresh, local fruits, vegetables, eggs, milk, cheese, meat, coffee, tea, bread & baked goods (including gluten free!), soap and wellness products, prepared foods (including mediterranean meals to go and fresh cider donuts!), beer, liquor, wine, and MUCH MORE!

Come see us!

Recap from Community Meeting for Renters

A resource workshop for renters was held on 10/22/2020. Check out the full video below or HERE to catch all the great information. Big thanks to all our partners: Hill District Consensus Group, Rent Help PGH, Hispanic CDC, Community Justice Project, CMU CREATE Lab, and Regional Housing Legal Services.

Community Meeting for Renters

Are you facing challenges making rent due to COVID-19? Need support to stay in your home? Come learn about local resources that can help!
Speakers will discuss applying for the PA CARES rent relief program, current status of the eviction moratorium, and accessing emergency services.

Three ways to join:
Zoom: https://zoom.us/j/99886205261
Phone: 312-626-6799 Meeting ID: 998 8620 5261
or Facebook Live at www.facebook.com/LawrencevilleUnited/

To RSVP or with questions please email info@lunited.org or call 412-802-7220.

This is the first of three virtual workshops focused on housing issues in Lawrenceville and beyond. The second meeting will focus on resources for homeowners and the third will focus on resources for landlords to preserve and expand affordable housing stock.

 

Fall 2020 LU Membership Meeting

Join us for LU’s fall membership meeting on Wednesday, October 7th, at 6:30 p.m. There are three ways to participate (no RSVP or password necessary!):

We’ll share some questions (and invite your own!) on how we can plan together to address the longer-term impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. During the meeting we’ll be breaking out into smaller discussion groups based on your main topics of interest, which could include things like food access, transportation, housing, small business support, development, equity, care for our elder wisdom keepers, etc. We invite your ideas! Please send us your suggestions for breakout room discussion topics to info@lunited.org!

We will also be discussing how we as Lawrenceville residents and LU members can most effectively participate in Pittsburgh’s city-wide planning process, now being carried out through online processes and platforms such as EngagePGH – we want to make sure our neighborhood’s voice is heard.

Please let us know if you need any accommodations to help make participating easier by contacting us at 412-802-7220 or info@lunited.org!

September Community Happenings meeting

Join us for the monthly Happenings meeting, our Lawrenceville-wide virtual community meeting, next Tuesday, September 15th, at 6:30 p.m.

The Pittsburgh Task Force on Public Algorithms will be presenting on their work and collecting feedback.  As has become part of our new normal, we will share information on lots of practical resources to keep coping with the challenges of COVID-world. We will also share some initial questions and invite your own to prepare for our upcoming membership meeting in October, where we will begin planning together to address the long-term impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. We’ll also consider how we want to participate in Pittsburgh’s city-wide planning process, now being carried out through online processes and platforms such as EngagePGH.

For more information and for the Zoom link and/or call in information, please contact us at 412-802-7220 or info@lunited.org.

2020 Board Elections + Spring Membership Meeting

 

Please join us for our annual Spring Membership Meeting & Board Elections on Thursday, June 11th at 6 p.m. The agenda will include:

  1. Board Elections: Each of the 14 candidates for the Board will share a few words about who they are and why they want to be on the Board.
  2. Open Q&A/comments: LU staff will respond to any questions, comments, and input from the community.
  3. Membership mixer: People participating by Zoom or by phone will break out into smaller groups to get to know each other and enjoy some neighborly company. BYOB, if you so choose!

 

More information about the meeting:

  • How to participate by Zoom: Due to COVID-19, we will continue to host our meetings virtually until further notice. We encourage you to participate by Zoom via computer or phone, as that will allow us the most amount of two-way dialogue. All LU active members will receive an invitation with instructions on how to participate by computer and how to call in by phone.
  • How to become a member, or renew your membership: If you need to renew your membership, or have never been a member of LU, you can renew/become a member online here, do it over the phone by calling 412-802-7220, or request to have a membership application mailed to you. Given COVID-19 and the economic uncertainty of so many, we are waiving membership fees this year for anyone who needs it. Any questions, please let us know.
  • How to participate by Facebook: We’ll also broadcast the meeting via Facebook Live, which you can access on our Facebook page (www.facebook.com/LawrencevilleUnited/). Please note that if you join by Facebook, you’ll only be able to use the comments box to participate, and we do plan on having some break-out groups later, so you won’t be able to participate in that portion.
  • How to view later if you’re unavailable: We’ll record the first two portions of the agenda and share them on our website and e-newsletter for folks who missed the meeting. UPDATE: View the Zoom recording here, or the Facebook Live video here.
  • How to vote in the Board elections: If your membership is current, you can vote for candidates for the Board of Directors by: (1) returning a ballot by mail to 118 52nd Street, Suite 2026, Pittsburgh, PA 15201; or (2) voting online via THIS FORM. The deadline to vote is Wednesday, June 17th. No votes received after June 17th will be accepted.

 

Slate of Candidates for LU Board of Directors Click on any candidate’s name to review their bio. Asterisks*** next to the name signify that this candidate is a current Board member running for re-election. Please note that two candidates on the paper ballot have asked to be removed from the ballot: Jen Bohland-Anhalt and Heather Mallak.

 

FAQs:

  • What is the Board? The Board of Directors is the governing body of LU. These volunteers set the strategic direction of the organization, evaluate the performance of the Executive Director, and make decisions about key positions.
  • How is the Board elected? LU’s Board of Directors are elected through a democratic process. Each year, all eligible candidates are put on a slate and elected by our membership.
  • Who is eligible to be an LU member? Anyone who resides in Lawrenceville, or has resided in Lawrenceville for more than 365 days in the last 15 years.
  • What Board positions are available: There are two kinds of Board positions: by-ward seats (which are based on each neighborhood to ensure geographic diversity of the Board) and at-large seats (which are open to any eligible member). Each Board member serves a 2-year term and elections are staggered, so roughly half of our Board seats are up for election each year. Nine (9) at-large seats are up for election in 2020. Additionally, there are currently two (2) vacancies in the by-ward seats: one for the 6th Ward (Lower Lawrenceville) and one for the 10th Ward (Upper Lawrenceville). There are 14 candidates (including 6 current Board members running for re-election) in the current slate.

 

Joint Statement from LU and LC

Lawrenceville United and Lawrenceville Corporation stand in solidarity with protests calling for justice for George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, and countless others, and demanding change to the continued realities of structural racism, oppression, and violence against Black Americans across  our nation and in our backyard. 

 

Right here in Lawrenceville, we see these disparities reflected in our neighborhood’s legacy as a redlined neighborhood and through ongoing displacement that disproportionately affects our Black neighbors. We see racial disparities in our public schools, where the large opportunity gap results in an achievement gap that persists at over 30 points, and where Black girls are referred to police more often than 99% of similar cities. We see it in our criminal justice system, where nearly 84% of youth who are arrested are Black, despite only accounting for 25% of the City’s population.  

 

Our local economy is riddled with these same racial disparities. While Black men in Pittsburgh attain higher levels of education than those in 60% of comparable cities, the concentration of Black men in lower paying jobs is higher in Pittsburgh than 99% of other cities. Given the gap between White and Black employment rates, Pittsburgh’s low Black employment is not due to the local economy, but the failure and refusal of local employers to hire Black workers seeking jobs. The Pittsburgh Metro Area has one of the lowest rates of black homeownership in the country, evidence of Black applicants for all types of loans being rejected at more than double the rate of White applicants. And most recently, it was estimated that 90% of businesses of color stood no chance at all of receiving funds from the Small Business Administration to support business operations in the wake of COVID-19.  

 

We can’t call ourselves an inclusive or safe neighborhood while these realities persist for our Black and Brown neighbors. 

 

These inequities are systemic, and we all have responsibility in addressing them. At LU, we’ll continue to strive to live up to our mission of improving quality of life for all, while championing equity and inclusion as core values of our organization and our community. Some of the ways we’re continuing to address these issues include: advocating for housing and education justice, working to address disparities in public safety by co-facilitating implicit bias and bystander intervention trainings, providing full scholarships to vendors representing Black and other underrepresented identities at the Lawrenceville Farmers Market, budgeting funds in 2020 for anti-racism and anti-oppression trainings for our organization and the community, and recently changing our by-laws to allow former residents–including those who have been displaced–to be able to vote and run for our Board of Directors. At LC, we are also investing in training for our organization and working to build organizational leadership and committees that are more inclusive and diverse, while also developing new programs focused on protecting and supporting minority and women owned businesses and entrepreneurs.  We are committed to advancing fairness, justice, and equity through our work and will demand dignity, respect, and opportunity for all from all community planning and development projects.  

 

We recognize there is more work to do, and as ever, we invite your input on how we’re doing and how we can do better. 

 

In a spirit of unity and urgency, we’re encouraging residents and other stakeholders who are able to make a contribution to local Black-led organizations that are on the front lines of racial justice in Pittsburgh. This week, we’re encouraging our neighbors to give to 1Hood Media, “a collective of socially conscious artists and activists who utilize art to raise awareness about social justice matters,” providing platforms for youth to tell their own stories and inspiring the activists of tomorrow. You can donate to their organization here, or by stopping by the “Info Booth” at Opening Day at the Lawrenceville Farmers Market (Tuesday, June 2nd from 4-7 p.m. at Arsenal Park).

Recap from May Lawrenceville-Wide Community Meeting

The May Lawrenceville-Wide Virtual Community Meeting was held on 5/19/2020 from 6:30-8 p.m.

  • View the full video recording by Zoom here, or by Facebook Live here.
  • View the presentation from Age Friendly Pittsburgh here.
  • View the presentation about the Lawrenceville Farmers Market here.