Peter Dreier

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Peter Dreier is professor of politics at Occidental College and has contributed to Shelterforce since the 1970s. He served for many years on the board of the National Housing Institute and was a founder of the Massachusetts Tenants Organization in the 1980s and has worked with housing activist groups since then.

The War on ACORN

The political and media war against ACORN continues. In an article published today on the Web site of Editor & Publisher, the well-known magazine...

National Work Among Community Organizing Groups Is Growing

Editor’s Note: This is in response to Randy Stoecker’s earlier post on community organizing on the national level. ACORN, PICO, and US Action are among...

The Chicago Sit-in: Has Obama’s Election Spurred a New Mood of Union Activism?

Editor’s Note: This article by Peter Dreier, NHI board member and professor of politics at Occidental College, first appeared in Dissent Magazine Two recent union...

Prescription for Progressive Change: Inspire and Mobilize

Barack Obama is going to need all his organizing skills to be an effective leader. As I write in an article in the...

Keeping Hope (And Housing) Alive in LA

Wall Street is in meltdown. Banks are collapsing. Developers can’t get loans to build homes. Housing values are plummeting. Millions of Americans are facing...

How to Fix the Mortgage Mess 101

Here’s the problem with the nation’s troubled financial system in a nutshell: Americans don’t have enough money to pay their mortgages. President Bush’s plan to...

Did the GOP Attack on Community Organizing Backfire?

In a column on September 14, titled “Community Organizing Changed Fishery,” John Corrigan, the fishing writer for the Concord Monitor, explained that “anybody...

Section 8 Is Only One Part of Addressing the Housing Crisis

Editor’s Note: The following is a response to a comment posted by Rooflines blogger Nandinee Kutty that points to “serious weaknesses” in Section 8...

Abolish HUD?

When faced with a serious and persistent problem, it is often tempting to propose dramatic ideas, like blowing up existing programs and starting from...

Memphis Murder Mystery? No, Just Mistaken Identity

A group of the nation's leading scholars and experts on housing and urban policy respond to The Atlantic's "American Murder Mystery"

What is a Housing “Crisis”?

Do we face a housing crisis when home prices are spiraling upward or when they are tumbling downward? Or both? Between 2000 and 2006, the...

Californians Defend Rent Control

On Tuesday, California voters provided a tremendous victory for tenants’ rights. They defeated Proposition 98, which would have phased out rent control, by...

Will Foreclosures Translate into Votes?

What are the political consequences of the mortgage meltdown? Will the spiraling wave of foreclosures translate into votes in November’s election? And, if so,...

Stemming the Red Tide

Greedy bankers, brokers, and investors abused their political power and forced millions of Americans to lose their homes. Now what can we do to solve the crisis?

The Supreme Denial of Integration

Despite the high court's recent blow to achieving classroom diversity, fair-housing practices can go a long way toward moving the country beyond racism.

Housing the Working Poor

What big ideas should housing activists put forward to the next president and Congress? Assuming that a Democrat wins the White House and that the Democrats hold onto or even expand their majority in Congress, housing advocates have an opening to promote a progressive agenda. Are we ready?

The Politics of Poverty

Can John Edwards make fighting poverty a winning platform?

Jane Jacobs’ Radical Legacy

Sometimes a book can change history. Books often influence ideas, but only rarely do they catalyze activism.

Frank Wilkinson’s Legacy

His was a life devoted to the preservation of our civil liberties. But it all began with a belief in decent, affordable housing.

Katrina: A Political Disaster

The handling of Hurricane Katrina's aftermath underscores the human disaster resulting from the ascendancy of right-wing ideas and corporate domination of the federal government, which extols market forces, individualism and private charity over public responsibility and the common good.

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