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Retro Report Panel Focuses On Fresno Housing Crisis And Historic Tie To The Last Pandemic

A nonprofit news organization, The Retro Report, is working on a new documentary that focuses on three U.S. cities with high eviction rates in the nation, including Fresno.

On Wednesday, Retro Report will host an online panel of experts to explain how the housing crisis in Fresno can be traced back to the last pandemic, the Spanish Flu of 1918. That’s when redlining started; the discriminatory practice of segregating and denying services, especially financial services to neighborhoods or communities of color.

Retro Report Field Producer Dan Casarez will moderate the panel Wednesday. He says communities in Southwest Fresno are disproportionately impacted.

“In order to change the future from having the next pandemic strike people of color so badly, is that maybe we can try to do something about this now,” he says.

He says the panel will discuss these longstanding practices and raise awareness about this crisis.

“People succumbing to intimidation by landlords, illegal evictions, So many people of color are struggling today, the entire year.” he says.

Panelists include:

Ben Metcalf, managing director of the Terner Center for Housing Innovation at University of California, Berkeley.

Brandi Snow, housing team co-lead attorney at Central California Legal Services in Fresno

Mario González, deputy director for Centro La Familia Advocacy Services (CLFA)

Shamus Roller, executive director of the National Housing Law Project

Danielle Bergstrom, founding director of Fresnoland

It starts at 11 a.m. December 9. You can still register online at Eventbrite here:


Soreath Hok is a multimedia journalist with experience in radio, television and digital production. She is a 2022 National Edward R. Murrow Award winner. At KVPR she covers local government, politics and other local news.