An audit of San Diego’s Code Enforcement Division released Thursday reveals residents dealing with unsafe housing conditions were likely to receive the same treatment as those complaining about messy yards and signs blocking sidewalks.
Megan Burks is a reporter for Speak City Heights, a media project of Voice of San Diego, KPBS, Media Arts Center and The AjA Project. You can contact her directly by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Residents can now file complaints against landlords for unsafe housing in their native language. It’s a change ushered in by a special enforcement team to help tenants created by Mayor Kevin Faulconer after a Voice of San Diego/KPBS investigation into substandard housing.
The department held one of its open house events in Encanto and for the first time gave the public a look at how it trains against racial profiling. But at least one resident thought officers tried too hard to convince attendees their racial profiling concerns were invalid.
San Diego Police and city officials in the past have written off charges of systemic racial profiling as mutual misunderstandings about culture and police practices. San Diego State researchers are using a new method called the “Veil of Darkness” to examine whether racial profiling claims hold up.
The mayor’s proposal could mean the city will begin treating substandard housing the way it treats illegal marijuana dispensaries and foreclosures.
Councilwoman Marti Emerald has ordered an independent review of the police department’s data.
A San Diego landlord has come under scrutiny for renting apartments with roaches and mold. Yet he still received over $500,000 last year from the federal Section 8 program, which subsidizes rent for low-income tenants.
A San Diego man who’s come under scrutiny for repeat housing code violations appears to be getting out of the landlord business.
San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer said Thursday he’ll increase funding to go after problem landlords after a Voice of San Diego and KPBS investigation showed tenants aren’t getting much help from the city fighting cockroaches, mold and other substandard housing conditions.
The city’s code compliance team knocks out thousands of isolated complaints a year, but does little to hold repeat offenders accountable. Residents and city staff have lodged complaints against one landlord for years, but roaches and mold still fester in his apartments.