Free screening of documentary on displacement hopes to spur conversation in Long Beach

The discussion surrounding displacement—one, mind you, that is alive and well in the Long Beach region—is a complicated one that includes additional conversations about gentrification, real estate development, land use policy, affordable housing construction, and more.

And that’s precisely why we are inviting Portland filmmaker and documentarian Cornelius Swart to Long Beach to not only discuss his film, Priced Out, but also offer a free screening of the film as part of our speaker series, Emphasize.

The event will take place on Thursday, September 20, at 7PM at the Art Theatre located at 2025 E 4th Street.

This documentary is two-fold: For one, it is a follow-up to Swart’s 1998 documentary NorthEast Passage, which follows the story of Nikki Williams, a black woman who is both exhausted and fed up with her neighborhood’s lack of safety, stores, and quality of living. She worked constantly to do everything from fight off affordable housing projects on her block to directly confronting drug dealers in order to get them evicted. In other words, she openly and unabashedly welcomed gentrification, even using the term herself and saying, “Bring it.”

Fifteen years later, Williams finds her neighborhood, Portland’s Albina community, void of black families, exorbitantly expensive, and unattainable for the precise people she was initially trying to protect.

This story is one that is not only important for Portland but important for Long Beach, Los Angeles, and beyond; this is a story for every city.

The film and discussion, as with all Emphasize events, is entirely free and open to the public. For more information, click here.

Brian Addison is a columnist and editor for the Long Beach Post. Reach him at [email protected] or on social media at Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn.

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