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Housing is a Human Right

Take Back the Land Rochester believes that housing is a human right, not a commodity. We believe that land and housing should be controlled by the community, not the banks. In order to elevate housing to a human right and secure community control over land we defend people from foreclosure-related evictions and assist homeless people to move into vacant, bank-owned homes. In this process we are wresting land from the control of the banks and turning it back to our community in the form of community land trusts—where land can be taken off the speculative market. As long as housing occurs at the whim of the banks and the market homelessness and poverty will plague our community forever. In short, housing should be for people not for profit. That's why we're taking back the land!

Facing Community Eviction Blockade, Marshal Calls Off Eviction of Rochester Resident

Through Sleet and Snow, Eviction Blockade Draws Out Dozens of Supporters, But No Marshal


Akhom Phetphanh and his Son Ty Locked to the Front Porch of Their House

April 15, 2014

Eviction Defence: Despite Eviction Orders, Akhom Phetphanh and Supporters Will Risk Arrest To Defend His Home

Inline image 1Akhom and His Son Tai in front of their long time home on Durnan St.



What: Eviction Protest and Blockade to Stop the Unjust Bank Eviction of Akhom Phetphanh

When: Tuesday, April 15, at 11:00am

Where: 256 Durnan Street, Rochester, NY 14621 (the 20 year residence of the Phetphanh family)

Why: United, we can stop the foreclosure machine and elevate housing to a human right

Take Back the Land's Catherine Lennon Seals Historic Foreclosure Fight Victory



In a Precedent Setting Move, Bank of America Deeds House Back to Catherine Lennon Without a Mortgage


MidFirst Bank and City Marshal Back Off Woods Family Eviction After First Day of Eviction Defense

MidFirst Bank and City Marshal Back Off Woods Family Eviction After First Day of Eviction Defense
The Take Back the Land Rochester Begins Eviction Watch During Eviction Hours 
Joe Woods, fighting for his home of 23 years (right) and Michael Connolly (left)
chained to the front porch at 394 Webster Ave. Rochester, NY to stop MidFirst
Bank'sattempt to evict the Woods Family 
Rochester, NY - On Thursday, September 26, 2013 the 72 hours expired on the eviction notice from MidFirst Bank for 394 Webster Ave., Rochester, NY.  The City Marshal said he'd would be coming by to execute the eviction on the 26th so MidFirst Bank could profit off another foreclosure and eviction.  However the Woods Family, neighbors, Take Back the Land Rochester, Metro Justice, Band of Rebels and other community supporters had another idea.  The Woods family and their supporters began an Eviction Blockade of the Woods family home on Webster Ave.  What started as a front lawn blockade with Home Defenders chained to the porch and forming a chain around the front yard became an energetic celebration of resistance that spilled into a blockaded Webster Ave. that even the police wouldn't cross.   

Take Back the Land Rochester to Launch Woods Family Eviction Defense

Despite Eviction Orders, Woods Family Stays in Their Home
Take Back the Land Rochester Plans Eviction Defense
Who: Community of Human Rights Defenders 
What: Eviction Protest to Stop the Unjust Bank Eviction of the Woods Family
When: Thursday, September 26, 2013 at 11:00am 
Where: 394 Webster Ave., Rochester, NY (the 23 year residence of the Woods family) 
Why: Because united we can stop the foreclosure machine and elevate housing to human right 
Who would do this?: Oklahoma-based MidFirst Bank, worth over $9 billion in assets 

Despite Another Eviction Attempt by Freddie Mac, The Steidel Family Pledges to Stay in their Home

 On Monday, August 13, 2013 at Noon Maria Steidel, Take Back the Land Rochester, Band of Rebels, and other community supporters will protest outside the Wells Fargo at 1200 Pittsford-Victor Road to protest their foreclosure of the Steidel family and Wells Fargo's mass foreclosure practices in general.  
The Steidel family's fight grabbed national and international attention in November 2011 when public pressure forced Freddie Mac to call off the eviction at 107 Clay Ave. Rochester, NY and Wells Fargo promised to negotiate in good faith.  However, after the spotlight has retreated from the family's struggle Wells Fargo is refusing to negotiate and Freddie Mac moving to evict the family again.  The original foreclosure was pushed through by the disgraced and now defunct foreclosure law firm Steven J. Baum.  However, even after Baum's foreclosure mill was forced to close, Wells Fargo and Freddie Mac have continued the same unethical practices in trying to take the house even though Wells Fargo fraudulently foreclosure (i.e., didn't own the mortgage when they foreclosed) and even though the Steidel family offered to buy the house back at fair market value.    

Facing Foreclosure, Akhom Phetphanh Pledges to Stay in His Home of 20 years

Akhom and his son Ty in front of their longtime home in Rochester









See Akhom's Letter to EverBank Below...


Open Letter to Everbank from Akhom Phetphanh in Rochester, NY

Fannie Mae Calls Off Brooks Ave. Eviction Amid Community Pressure

On the evening of June 11, 2013 a Representative from Fannie Mae called Renee Madison to notify her that the imminent eviction of her family has been called off as they re-review her case.  This is after Renee Brooks defied her 72 hour eviction notice (which expired June 6, 2013) and Take Back the Land Rochester, community supporters, and her neighbors rallied to stop the eviction and demand Fannie Mae negotiate a settlement so the family can stay in their home of 17 years.  For more background see Renee's public letter to Fannie Mae.

Eviction Protest to the Stop Unjust Foreclosure-Based Eviction of Renee Madison and her Family


On Monday, June 10, 2013, at 612 Brooks Ave., Rocheter, NY 14619 Renee Madison, Take Back the Land Rochester, and other community supporters rallied to demand the Fannie Mae withdraw's the unjust eviction of Renee Madison and her family.  The family has lived in their home for 17 years and Renee Madison is looking to buy the house back but the bank has shown no willingness to wait to work out a settlement.  Ms. Madison has lupus and Graves disease but that has not deterred Fannie Mae trying to forcefully evict the family.  


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