A 98-year-old woman will be evicted from her San Francisco apartment soon if she loses her legal battle against a real estate company. Mary Phillips has lived in her Dolores Street apartment for 50 years, and despite never being late with a rental payment, she may lose her home because of a legal loophole.
The 98-year-old woman could be evicted because of the 1986 Ellis Act, which allows landlords to unconditionally evict tenants if they are getting out of the rental business. Urban Green Investments has been purchasing San Francisco real estate— the city's rent rates have skyrocketed in recent years— and evicting tenants like Phillips and several others.
"I didn't sit down and cry, I just refused to believe it," Phillips told KRON news of when she received her eviction notice. "They're going to have to take me out of here feet first."
"Just because of your age, don't let people push you around," she added.
Now Phillips' attorneys are fighting the eviction in court. Although they are facing a large investment company, those who challenge Ellis evictions have a good chance of winning their cases, according to the San Francisco Tenants Union.
Phillips, who has nowhere else to live except her rent-controlled apartment, is also receiving support through local activists. VanishingSF, who is against the "hyper-gentrification on San Francisco communities," called attention to the elderly woman's fight.
"Who evicts a 98 year old woman?" a post on the group's Facebook page read. "Feel free to let Urban Green CEO David McCloskey, who's evicting her, know what you think, ask him how he sleeps at night and if he'd put his grandmother on the streets. David@urbangreeninv.com (415) 651-4441 http://www.urbangreeninv.com."
After VanishingSF's calls for support, protestors showed up on Wednesday in front of the offices of Urban Green Investments.