Bedford-Stuyvesant, the Gentrification Frontier

The Feb. 25 episode of CUNY TV’s “Independent Sources” is dedicated to Bedford Stuyvesant, “the gentrification frontier” that is “losing its Black residents in droves.” The central Brooklyn neighborhood reported the largest percentage increase of whites in the city between 2000 and 2010. Richard Flateau (chair of the Economic Development Committee of the local Community Board 3), former Family Court judge Betty E. Staton (now president of Legal Services NYC), and Colvin W. Grannum (president of the Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation) discuss what is behind this movement of newcomers and how these changes are affecting longtime Black residents.

According to Staton:

“You have people coming in now who are doing all kinds of illegal acts to displace rent-controlled, rent stabilized, all these kinds of tenants and move them and just displace them out of the neighborhood. And much of it is illegal, much of it is through loopholes in the rent stabilization law. Much of it is just plain illegal.”

She goes on to say that longtime residents are fighting to hold on to a culture and a sense of community that was always a part of the neighborhood.

Watch above to hear what the panelists had to say, as well the mixed emotions of longtime resident Kai Avent-deLeon, the owner of “high-end curated concept store” Sinerely, Tommy, and her comments about some of the newcomers coming with a sense of entitlement.

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