A Good Daughter Defeats Displacement - The Gonzalez Family Story

Tiny - Posted on 22 December 2014

By tiny aka Lisa Gray-Garcia/Daughter of Dee

“You are a good daughter, so of course we will rent to you “ I was houseless with my mama at the time, we were living in our car and had been turned down for every apartment we tried to get. This moment came back to me when i had the honor of meeting good daughter, granddaughter and mama, Lisa Gonzales, whose entire family was facing eviction from their mission district home of several generations..

In July of 2014 Lisa Gonzales came to POOR Magazine/Prensa POBRE's Community Newsroom to tell her story of deceit by real estate snakkkes, who were attempting to deny her mother and grandmother their rightful life-time lease in the apartment they had lived in for generations.

“No More Evictions, Keep Our Families Housed, “  The herstoric day us Po Folks and community advocates walked into the extra quiet, White West Portal streets and into the offices of Barbegelata Real Estate to address the snakkkes that were trying to take the Gonzales home right out from under 5 generations of mission district Raza our voices rang out for justice of this family.

“You will have to go, “ said the angry gate-keeper aka secretary to our crowd of over 30 folks. We were a contingent of POOR Magazine family, Anti-Eviction Mapping Project and Tenants Union advocates who were determined to stay in that office until we found someone who would take responsibility for this elder abuse of Lisa’s 94 year grandmother and 66 year old mother who were all about to be houseless if they continued with their plans.

Eventually Paul Barbegelata himself appeared from the back of the office. “I am a human, he replied to a request i shouted out in the office, “ Are there any human beings here?”

To shut us up and get us out of his pristine office he agreed to meet with us at another time.

Later that week he began talking with Lisa and immediately tried to convince her not to pursue the life-time lease, But Lisa and POOR Family were not so easily swayed. We all knew that Lisa needed to get an attorney and try as hard as we did we couldn’t get a pro-bono attorney for the family, because like all of us poor peoples know there are no pro-bono attornies available for low-income tenants.

So like the good daughter she is, Lisa went into debt to hire an attorney, because no matter what she would not let her mama and grandmama down.  

In September of this very hard year, Lisa’s beloved grandmother passed away, before she could see her fierce granddaughter acquire their families life-time lease which they finally did after over $2,000 of legal fees were racked up.

I remembered that Mrs Woo realized that no matter how poor we were, how bad our credit was, I was caring for my mama, honoring my elder, by any means necessary and for that she gave us a home.Lisa is another good daughter who cared for her family by any means necessary and then fought and won her right to her elders having their home, Please support this beautiful human, this humble, good daughter.

Please consider donating to the GoFUndMe page set up to help the family pay the insane legal fees they still owe- here is the link

Jason Chan Evicting 4 Generations Under 1 Roof from Peter Menchini on Vimeo.


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