Resident Survey Ends June 1!!! Click This Link Today!

by Ethan Michaeli, Publisher 


Attention Attention

Calling All CHA Residents and Former Residents,

Please follow the link below and fill out the following Survey. This Survey will help Resident Leaders negotiate with city officials to make sure the Plan for Transformation 2.0 truly works for all Chicago families.

Everyone who fills out the survey will qualify to win a laptop computer or a $250 gift card. Feel free to share the link with anyone you know. Anyone who fills out the survey is eligible to win the prizes. ACT SOON, the survey closes June 1.

The Survey is sponsored by We The People Media, the nonprofit publishers of Residents’ Journal, working with the elected leaders of public housing families. You can find out more about We The People Media at

Please call the Central Advisory Council at (312) 913-7828 with any questions or concerns!

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Who Could Miss The Hole?

by Ethan Michaeli, Publisher 

To most people, the Hole was the worst part of America’s toughest neighborhood – the Robert Taylor Homes public housing development. Around the world, Robert Taylor’s 16-story high rises were infamous for their gangs, drugs, broken elevators, single mothers and general desperation. For a generation, those 28 high rises lined a 99-acre stretch of the South Side. “The Hole” was the nickname given to three of the buildings which stood in a u shape at the south end of the development, at the intersection of 53rd and Federal streets.

“They called it ‘The Hole’ because once you got in, you couldn’t get out,” quipped Residents’ Journal’s Assistant Editor Beauty Turner, who lived in Robert Taylor for 16 years.
Read more »

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Deadly Moves: Lack of Force

by Mary C. Piemonte and Brian J. Rogal

When Francine Washington noticed hordes of police officers outside U.S.

Cellular Field this spring, she walked toward the ballpark and counted them. The stadium, home of the Chicago White Sox, sits about three blocks west of the Stateway Gardens public housing development where she lives with her husband of 23 years.

For years, Francine Washington complained about open drug dealing in the first-floor lobby of the Stateway Garden high-rise where she lives. Only recently have routine police patrols in the building slowed the drug activity.
Photo by Mary Hanlon

“I went out there twice. The first time I counted 105 police officers out there. The next time I counted 107 officers,” said Washington, president of Stateway’s local advisory council, an elected tenant body.
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A Championship Victory

by Mary C. Piemonte 

Public housing residents of the Stateway Gardens complex recently scored a slam-dunk victory over the Chicago Police Department in a one-half million dollar over illegal police searches at a basketball game in February 2001.

The Lawsuit
On Feb. 4, 2003, in the case of Williams v. Brown, the City of Chicago and attorneys representing residents of Stateway Gardens entered into a written agreement to settle a federal civil rights lawsuit against the Chicago Police Department. The attorneys for the residents from the Edwin F. Mandel Legal Aid Clinic of the University of Chicago Law School settled with the city for the amount of roughly $500,000.
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Positive Residents of the CHA

by Bobby Watkins 

A 28-year resident of Stateway Gardens, Francine is long overdue to get her flowers because she is always there when help is needed. She wears many hats, be it with her job as senior program adviser for the resident initiatives department of the Chicago Housing Authority or as Local Advisory Council president, Tenant Patrol member, her involvement in the summer food program and with various boards (including We The People Media), she is truly your super woman. And so much more because she is a wife and mother as well.

But when does she sleep? One thing can be said of Francine – she is one of those people who likes helping others and truly does it from her heart. Many people meet her for the first time, notice that she is quick to voice her opinion, and say, “Ooh, she is mean.” But after getting to know her, you’ll find out that’s what she has to do to keep you straight on the job. Read more »

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Residents Fight Vacate Orders

by Benjamin Harris 

Under threat of being forced to leave their homes, residents in Stateway Gardens and Rockwell Gardens are fighting the City of Chicago’s efforts to condemn their buildings.

Residents of Stateway Gardens recently won their effort to stop the vacate order for two buildings in that South Side community.

There are many buildings in CHA developments which are in need of immediate and serious repairs, so much so that the City of Chicago recently filed building code violation suits against buildings in several developments in circuit court and won. The city complained that some of the residential housing units were in such a horrendous state of repairs that the residents’ health, welfare and safety were in danger. The city cases were based upon the official building inspection reports that were submitted by the inspectors of the city Building Department. Read more »

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