Join the Fight Against Displacement: Community Event Discusses Columbia University’s Tax-Exempt Property Hoarding

NEW YORK, NY – The Interfaith Housing Commission for Housing Equality, a coalition of faith leaders dedicated to combating housing inequality in Harlem, is calling on community members and leaders to attend a community meeting at 6:30 pm on Thursday, January 25th, 2024. The event will occur at Mt Olivet Baptist Church, 201 Malcolm X Blvd, New York, NY 10027.

The purpose of the meeting is to shed light on what plans we have in place to delay and prevent Columbia University’s alleged abuse of their tax-exempt privilege by purchasing properties with the intention of preventing African Americans and Latinos from residing near the university in Morningside Heights. As an organization committed to protecting Harlem residents from gentrification and displacement, the Interfaith Housing Commission views this issue as crucially important. The subcommittees have been hard at work to craft several action plans as we work towards our objectives. 

Photo of Donald Cogsville sourced from Observer

“We cannot stand idly by while our beloved Harlem faces annihilation through further gentrification,” said Donald Cogsville, Member of the Interfaith Housing Commission for Housing Equality. “We must come together as a community and demand comprehensive workforce housing programs that protect our residents from being displaced by developers with corporate interests.” 

The objective of this community planning event is clear: share our calls to action with the community, generate new ideas for the purpose of meeting our goals, and organize the next steps for the movement. Together we aim to persuade Governor Hochul and state legislators to rescind sections of the Mixed-Use Education program while implementing other necessary legislative actions that prioritize safeguarding the existing population. 

Cogsville continued his impassioned appeal stating: “Harlem holds within its streets an immeasurable history intertwined with African American culture. We cannot let it be dismantled piece by piece. It is imperative that we unite forces now so that future generations can continue flourishing within this vibrant uptown neighborhood.” 

Joining this fight against displacement means actively participating in efforts aimed at preserving Harlem’s rich legacy alongside its current inhabitants.

About Interfaith Housing Commission for Housing Equality

The Interfaith Housing Commission for Housing Equality is a coalition composed of passionate faith leaders who dedicate themselves to advocating for comprehensive workforce housing programs. Their goal is to protect Harlem residents from displacement and preserve the historical integrity of this iconic New York City neighborhood. 

For more information about the Interfaith Housing Commission for Housing Equality, please visit their Facebook at

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