Willy Packnett sits with his grandson Buddha in the house on 72nd Ave in Oakland, California where he lives with his daughters and grandchildren. A new landlord recently purchased the house and doubled Willy’s monthly rent from $1000 to $2000. Willy, 61, never thought he would be faced with losing his home. He has worked since age 14 and built the house he lives in. He retired from his construction job in 2015 but was forced to resume work when his rent suddenly increased. “I always wondered about people on the street, about how they became homeless,” he says. “But now I’m faced with the same situation as a lot of people who ended up homeless. I don’t know where we’ll go if I have to leave this house.” In recent years, over 25 percent of Oakland’s black residents have moved away. With the help of local activist group @acce_action, Willy and his family are negotiating with their landlord, in hopes of staying in their home.
Photo by @lucasfogliaphoto, caption by @camillasterne.
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