Property owner to Moms 4 Housing: We’ll shelter you for two months if you leave

OAKLAND — The owner of a West Oakland house taken over by a
group of homeless and insecurely housed women has offered to pay
for them to live elsewhere for two months — an overture the women
summarily refused.

Wedgewood, a real estate investment company that owns the
Magnolia Street house, on Saturday said it would pay nonprofit
Catholic Charities to shelter the women of
activist group Moms 4 Housing
for two months, while they look
for permanent housing. The company also reiterated a previous offer
to pay their moving expenses.

“Wedgewood hears and understands what the individuals
illegally in its home are saying, but it cannot condone theft,”
Sam Singer, who is handling public relations for the company, wrote
in a news release. “We want to help them by offering to pay for
shelter and moving through Catholic Charities.”

Moms 4 Housing founder Dominique Walker, who took over the empty
house in November along with several other women and founded Moms 4
Housing, called Wedgewood’s offer an “insult.”

“It is deeply disingenuous for this multi-million dollar
corporation, through their multi-million dollar public relations
firm, to pretend to be concerned about the well being of black
families,” she wrote in a statement.

Singer said Wedgewood had not made the offer directly to the
squatters, as the company has no phone number to reach them. But he
said the company has been in talks with Catholic Charities to work
out a plan to help the women. Once the women vacate the house,
Wedgewood has said it will
employ local at-risk young adults to renovate the property
and
then sell it to a first-time homebuyer, with the help of Los
Angeles-based nonprofit Shelter 37.

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Walker, her two children and the other women of Moms 4 Housing

moved into the house Nov. 18 without permission
to call
attention to the homelessness crisis in Oakland. The group argues
speculators should not be able to buy investment properties and
leave them empty while thousands of people in the city are without
a home. The women have offered to buy the house through nonprofit
Oakland Community Land Trust, but Wedgewood says it won’t
negotiate with the squatters while they are illegally occupying the
property.

On Friday, a judge ruled Walker has no right to stay in the
house, and the women expect to be evicted in the next few days.
Walker and the other members have refused to leave, and have called
on supporters to stand with them and risk arrest when the
sheriff’s office comes to execute the eviction.

Source: FS – All – Real Estate News 1
Property owner to Moms 4 Housing: We’ll shelter you for two months if you leave