Heather Way Highlights Legal Reforms to Help Tenants Attain Fair Treatment From Landlords

Heather Way (’97), clinical professor and the director of the Housing Policy Clinic at The University of Texas School of Law, co-authored an article for Shelterforce providing recommendations of legal reforms that cities and states should adopt to assist tenants collectively advocate for more just treatment from landlords (“Six Steps to Ensuring a Strong Right To Organize for Tenants,” May 4). “Tenants organize for a variety of reasons, from combating displacement pressures and landlord harassment to obtaining improvements to their buildings’ conditions. But wins from tenant organizing are often elusive when there are no legal protections for organizing in the first place. Although many factors shape the strength of organizing movements, the law matters in facilitating organizing — whether the organizing is by employees, tenants, or others facing significant power imbalances absent collective mobilization.”