Housing and Homelessness

Jen Pack

Seattle is a vibrant city full of opportunities–but we have been pricing people out of our city and denying them those opportunities for years. With rent, housing costs, and property taxes all rising, the number of Seattleites finding themselves without shelter continues to climb. As a candidate committed to the future of our city, I recognize the urgency not only in providing immediate relief for the unhoused but also in addressing the root causes of our housing crisis. Seattle is a growing city; if we do not act now to address both the symptoms and root causes of our housing crisis, we will perpetuate the cycle of displacement that has fractured our communities and spilled into our streets.


  • We can look to other cities who have had successes–New York’s guaranteed housing/right to shelter has proven massively successful in getting people off the street and giving them access to services. Seattle temporarily did something similar during lockdown. Formalizing and streamlining this program would get people off the streets and save money on sweeps that do nothing but shuffle unhoused people around the city.
  • Pass I-137, the House Our Neighbors initiative to fund social housing. Funded by progressive revenue, I-137 places no burden on renters or homeowners and will increase the supply of housing, stabilizing rent costs and creating stable, long-term housing for people of all income levels.
  • Create an Office of Renters Standards to protect tenants and improve enforcement and clarity on renters and landlord rights. This will make renting a smoother process for both renters and landlords, as well as protect one from the abuses of the other. 
  • Create a formal system of encampment approval, partnered with housing providers, and in compliance with right-to-shelter agreements. Provide sanitation services and address fire hazards to ensure community health is not being negatively impacted by encampments that cannot be moved.
  • Change zoning laws to increase the housing supply. Building complete neighborhoods with all types of housing and essential services like transit, grocers, and small businesses will open up thousands of lots for potential development and massively increase our housing supply, leaving us with room to grow in the coming decades.