Food distribution as solidarity and as a tool for building tenant power in Los Angeles

Teresa Roman of the Acción Comunitaria in conversation with Ana Vilenica, co-edited by Bryan Quintanilla

Published in Issue 5.1 // Conversation Series

Keywords: Food solidarity, tenants union, Latinx struggles, Los Angeles


In this conversation, Teresa Roman, Latina organizer and member of Accion Comunitaria and Los Angeles Tenant Union, shares her observations and analysis about the ongoing struggles in communities of Los Angeles. She discusses the use of food distribution as a means of building solidarity and tenant power, organizing against police harassment in migrant communities, and the role of women in tenant struggles.

My name is Teresa Roman. I am a Latina Mother. I have always loved being empowered to help others. I am always involved in the community because I believe that my voice and my participation are very important. Through Acción Comunitaria, we currently organize a weekly distribution of food, pantry goods, and personal items for the elderly, the houseless, and vulnerable families, with the support of organizations such as Los Angeles Tenants Union, LA Mas, and friends from the neighborhood. The drive I have to do this community work is largely due to my parents, and two very important women in my life who believed in me and what I could do for others. Our food distributions could not be done without the tireless work of the other Accion Comunitaria mothers and grandmothers from this neighborhood who come and help every week.

Ana Vilenica is a feminist, no-border, and urban activist and organizer from Serbia, currently residing in Italy. She is a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow with the ERC project ‘Inhabiting Radical Housing’ at the Polytechnic of Turin’s Inter-university Department of Regional & Urban Studies and Planning (DIST) and a core member of Beyond Inhabitation Lab. Ana is a member of the Radical Housing Journal Editorial collective and the Feminist Autonomous Centre for research (FAC research).


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