People’s Self-Help Housing
(PSHH) recently announced that 38 brand new affordable rental units reserved for farmworkers and their families are open for applications.
RENDERING COURTESY OF PEOPLE’S SELF-HELP HOUSING
MOVING IN People’s Self-Help Housing announced 38 new units in Guadalupe reserved exclusively for farmworkers and their families.
PSHH CEO John Fowler said they expect Guadalupe Court
's first residents to be able to move in as early as August. At least one person in the applicant household must work in the farming industry, Fowler said.
“Guadalupe is a farmworker community,” Fowler said. “For this particular project, some of the funding comes from the USDA [U.S. Department of Agriculture], so if they contribute their money they get to set the rules: That this will be 100 percent farmworker families.”
State Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson emphasized the importance of housing security for essential workers, like farmers, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. It’s vital, she said, “to have a place to call home after a long day of providing these essential services and risking their own health and safety.”
While this property is exclusively available to farmworkers and their families, Fowler said that many other PSHH owned and managed properties don’t require that, such as the River View property in Guadalupe.
Along with earning at least $5,753 per year from agricultural labor, applicants must also be citizens or legal permanent residents of the United States. Fowler said the rule comes from the project’s USDA funding source, and isn’t a PSHH requirement.
“To tap into a USDA program, which is a federal program, you do have to be a U.S. citizen,” he said.
However, Fowler said that PSHH owns other projects and housing options that are fully available to both undocumented and documented people.
“We have almost 2,000 apartment complexes and rental units, and some of those [residents] are undocumented,” he said. “There’s not a requirement by the funding source.”For PSHH units that don’t require applicants to be citizens, Fowler said the application process is the same regardless of a person’s documentation status.“
They still have to meet the same credit standards, and there’s the same screening process to make sure these are good residents, that kind of thing,” he said. “But there’s no difference in the application or the requirements.”
Fowler encouraged folks to apply for the new property in Guadalupe. So far, he said, less people than usual have shown interest because of the pandemic.
“It’s unusual that we don’t have three to four hundred people standing in line waiting for a couple of units,” he said. “It has to be because they’re concerned about the pandemic, and I want people to know they can go online, and go through the whole process virtually.”
As the new units near their final touches, Fowler said the pandemic hasn’t slowed them down.
“We’re exempt from the governor’s stay-at-home order, because housing is such an important thing in California,” he said. “We have been continuing to build safely through the pandemic, and we’re hoping people will find their way online to get those applications.”
Applications are available in person from River View Townhomes at 230 Calle Cesar E. Chavez in Guadalupe, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or online at pshhc.org. Email questions to email@example.com or call (805) 249-2040. ∆