The struggle for land and housing justice in Cape Town has been spearheaded locally over the past few years by activist organisations Ndifuna Ukwazi and Reclaim the City. We, as OpenUp, have joined that struggle in a supporting role with the Evictions Project.
Our support largely entails designing systems and tools (or “interventions”) that facilitate greater access to justice for low-income tenants facing eviction, so that no eviction ends in homelessness. We work in conjunction with civil society and affected communities to create these systems and tools. Our skills are largely tech-centred and include: coding, working with data, graphic design and building websites.
While NU and RTC work across the different facets of land and housing justice, the OpenUp Eviction Project currently focuses exclusively on eviction. We may branch out into other areas, but at the moment our focus is on the legal eviction system and helping tenants navigate the law better so that they are not evicted into homelessness.This is our North star metric.
Evictions are a major component of the housing crisis. Eviction and displacement have many terrible negative effects on families, communities, and on wider society. The cost of displacement to government and tax-payers is an additional reason that we need to fight unjust and unlawful evictions. The Eviction Project is one of the ways OpenUp can use its technical expertise to aid the greater land and housing struggle in South Africa.