PBOC’s Endorsement for Sheriff: Jewell Williams


The Point Breeze Organizing Committee is proud to announce our endorsement of Jewell Williams for Sheriff. Endorsing Williams is very much in line with the community organizing and anti-gentrification work PBOC has been engaged in Point Breeze. Not only does the Sheriff’s office play an important role in helping to keep people in their homes and avoid foreclosure if possible, but Williams also holds a documented record of community activism and commitment to advocating for working class communities that we believe should be recognized. Raised in North Philly, Williams has intentionally remained a resident there because he understands the importance of keeping in touch with one’s roots and remaining apart of and active in one’s community. His commitment to defending working class communities from such threats like gentrification is honorable and a central reason why PBOC is endorsing Williams for Sheriff. We are confident he will continue to make the Sheriff’s office a tool to keep long-term residents in their homes and speculative developers at bay.

Dishonest, Disingenuous, but Media Savvy

Apr 10th – Yesterday, people may have come across the below Facebook post from Ori Feibush.


It was accompanied by pictures of vandalism, somebody had spray painted the words “Don’t vote 4 Ori” on the side of a home in Point Breeze.  Mr. Feibush with no explanation or evidence sought to hold his opponent Councilman Kenyatta Johnson responsible.  Feibush’s long-time collaborator Republican candidate for Sheriff even posted a story about it.

This Facebook post came just as Mr. Feibush was receiving mounting criticism about the tone he brought to the 2nd District Council race.  Feibush was facing questions about language he had used to describe Councilman Johnson in the past.  Specifically, in Philadelphia Magazine, Feibush had reffered to Johnson as a “poverty pimp” and “terrible human being” yet at more recent forums called him a “nice guy.”

Feibush, instead of answering, aimed to changed the conversation.

It’s media savvy, in that it demonstrates Mr. Feibush knows how to affect media cycles.

However, for those of us in the Point Breeze neighborhood who’ve been embattled with Mr. Feibush,  it’s not the first time he pulled this same play:

On August 24th, 2013, the Point Breeze Organizing Committee (PBOC) organized a march down Point Breeze avenue that ended in a protest of Mr. Feibush’s business.  The morning of the march, there was an incident of vandalism – someone threw a brick through the window of OCF’s coffee shop.

Screen Shot 2015-04-10 at 3.18.34 PM

Mr. Feibush wasted no time calling the media.  He convinced them to film him cleaning up the glass.  This was in order to portray him as under attack and sympathetic (much like yesterday’s post).  Mr. Feibush, again with no evidence, told NBC News that he knew for a fact it was our organization, PBOC, that had done it.  This, of course, differed from the police department, who did not think we did it.

That alone demonstrated a high level of irresponsibility, however a closer examination of the facts suggest something even more dubious.

The vandalism occurred at 6am.  Only 90 minutes later (see creation time below), somebody launched the website, “PointBreezeCriminals.com” with a corresponding youtube page, and twitter account. The site’s sole article argued that the act of vandalism was connected to PBOC’s march.  It also posted the surveillance footage.

PBCriminalswebsite-small  whois-small

Feibush, was apparently “lucky”, that he had a friend who was up that early and in such a small amount of time, had the idea for a website, obtained the domain, built the website and corresponding social media, uploaded and transferred the surveillance video footage, wrote the article, then recruited supporters to promote the website.

It was convenient for OCF in that, for those outside the neighborhood, it shifted the narrative to one where Feibush was a victim.  Media savvy.

Dishonest, Disingenuous, but Media Savvy.

Addendum: OCF Realty customer reviews point to disturbing pattern.


Addendum: OCF Realty customer reviews point to disturbing pattern.


A few weeks ago we wrote about Ori Feibush and OCF Realty’s history of illegally withholding security deposits from tenants until ordered by the court to return them.

In numerous cases, Mr. Feibush withheld security deposits from his tenants without cause, forcing them to take him to court. Only after a judge ruled that Mr. Feibush had to return the money would he finally relent and reimburse his disgruntled former renters.

Some of Ori’s supporters suggested that we were lemon picking; taking a few isolated incidents out of context in order to paint an unfairly negative picture.

We agree that it’s easy to discredit someone, if you’re willing to take things out of context. That’s why it’s so important to note what is an isolated incident and what is in fact a long-standing and documented pattern.

People familiar with the Point Breeze Organizing Committee know we’ve pushed very hard against the assertions from people like Mayor Nutter that Government is a business. A Government is for and by the people – democratic – it can do things for the common good, whether it proves profitable or not. It can invest in things like affordable housing and not focus narrowly on a rate of return. It’s not answerable to a select few, it’s answerable to all of us, and that empowers our Government to do things that can benefit all of us.


However, if a candidate is going to run on a record of being a successful businessman, we believe it’s fair to ask how they define success. Do they define it as them making the most amount of money possible? Or were they able to provide a good or service, that helped people or benefited their lives or at least had basic standards of decency in regard to customer service.

That’s why we are asking the rest of the 2nd District to check out the below Yelp reviews – customers of OCF Realty have taken time to write detailed reviews of their experience, and they’re par and parcel with the Tenants’ experience we just documented and our on-going experience with this developer in our neighborhood.

Consider this one from Rich D. on Yelp.

“My personal experience with OCF was not at all pleasant. We had various problems the entirety of our stay (not all problems were caused by OCF initially), but this real estate management company did not make things better.

“One example would be when our apartment was robbed. Initially, OCF refused to give us an additional lock on our back door (which was the entrance used to rob the unit) and said that our security was our issue.”

Read more here: http://www.yelp.com/biz/ocf-realty-philadelphia?hrid=h3R_jRBDIlSWV9HXO0Pjjw

Or this one from Rebecca N. on Yelp.

“OCF is out to make money and that’s it.  Bottom line.  They will work hard to protect the property manger so long as it means making money.  Keep in mind that if you rent from OCF and they are serving as property manager, their real client is the property owner, NOT you as a tenant.

“I wanted to like them and trust them because they have a big clean store front, fancy website, and the employees seemed nice, but it’s a facade.”


Here’s one from Brian M.

“We have rented a house for the past two years in South Philadelphia.  Our landlord selected OCF realty to manage his 1 year old home (we were the first renters).  OCF did an absolutely horrendous job as property managers, and I finally convinced the owner to drop them last November.

“Bottom line:  OCF is not good for renters or landlords. They do not have the motivation, expertise or personnel to properly manage residential rental properties, and they hire cut-rate repairmen.”


And one from Amelia C.

“I do NOT recommend renting or buying a home through OCF. I find that Ori, the owner, is a dishonest business person who has poorly trained staff. The negative reviews about this company have been spot on.”



A Princess, according to the story, upon hearing the peasants had no bread to eat, responded with disregard, “Let them eat Cake.” Mr. Feibush used the phrase to launch his coffee shop. It’s hard to see the humor given the actual disregard he’s shown for long-time residents.

We could go on and on, but we encourage you to read the reviews for yourself by following the links. There are plenty just like these.

On top of what we found on Yelp, we searched a site called whoseyourlandlord.com and found more of the same.

One reviewer’s comments were indicative of the general consensus, “Never follow through on anything they say. They would avoid calls and emails. I’m sure there are many other things I am forgetting, to sum it up the experience was terrible.”

Even one person who gave OCF Realty its best rating on the page warned, “they tried to cheat us out of most of our deposit and bill us for many issues that the previous tenant had done.”

What our neighborhood is clear on, and what will become increasingly clear to the whole 2nd District through this election is we are the ones putting Mr. Feibush’s business practices into their proper context; the pattern is un-mistakable.

We are the ones saying: this isn’t about some media savvy millionaire and his harmless escapades. It is real people who’ve been mistreated, had their time wasted, or worse threatened with lawsuits for speaking up at zoning meetings.

Government is not business. Government is accountable to people not profits. However, if Mr. Feibush wants to govern, he wants to represent us in City Hall, and he submits he is capable because of his business record, then we would be wise to look at this business record.

If Mr. Feibush defines “success” as making the most possible out of money, then perhaps he has been successful. We on the other hand define success differently – it involves making a contribution and doing right by your fellow human being, and in that regard it’s hard to imagine a less successful businessperson.

We will let others decide if he’s fit for business. But we will decide if he’s fit to govern us. And he’s not.



Ori Feibush v. his tenants

Is this the type of businessman we want representing us in City Hall?

Ori Feibush, owner of OCF Realty and the OCF Coffeehouse establishments, is running for city council from the Second District largely on his record as a businessman in the district; it’s a bit ironic for those of us who lived where he does business.

His campaign literature promises “real results” and the promise to “fix Philly.”

His biography says his background inspired him to “pursue work that would lift up others, not just himself.” And it claims that he has the “right experience to bring common sense solutions to City Hall.”

OriFeibushFoxWe agree with Mr. Feibush, that his business practice and conduct will indicate precisely the type of councilperson he will be. We welcome the opportunity to talk about what business practices could look like if they were accountable to the community.

We invite the rest of the 2nd District to join us in looking past the image and publicity that money can buy, and scrutinize Mr. Feibush’s actual business practice.

The fact is Ori Feibush has often been nothing more than a typical, greedy landlord. He has repeatedly and illegally withheld thousands of dollars worth of security deposits from his rental tenants, forcing them to go to court and get a judge to order him to repay their deposits.

Take a look for yourself:

Court Rules Ori Feibush Illegally Withheld Security Deposit

Liza Tanihara paid Mr. Feibush’s OCF Realty a security deposit of $3,100 and a pet deposit of $300 when she first signed a lease with him. According to her lawsuit against OCF Realty, when she vacated the property on June 28, 2013 she left it in good shape, but Ori refused to return the money she was owed. On top of that, Tanihara claimed that Ori was overcharging her for her monthly water bills, which added up to $275 worth of overpayments. He agreed to refund the money, but never did. Two months after she left the property, Ori still had not returned any of what she was owed. She was forced to file a lawsuit to collect. The court ruled that Ori was, indeed, illegally withholding her money and ordered him to pay her $2,625.

[Liza Tanihara vs. OCF Realty, Philadelphia Municipal Court, 8/23/13]
[Statement of Claim, Notice of Judgement]

Court Rules Ori Feibush Illegally Withheld Funds . . . Again

Sometimes, even when people don’t decide to rent with Ori, he still keeps their money. Consider Kevin Minor. He was interested in renting property from Ori so on July 16, 2010, he put down $900 for the first month’s rent. When he asked to have a refrigerator and washer/dryer hook up included in the property, he was told that doing so would increase the monthly rent by $75 each month. Kevin decided he couldn’t afford that, so he asked for his first month’s rent back since he would not be renting from Ori. By October 2010, he still had not received his $900, so he was forced to file a lawsuit against Ori and OCF Realty for the money. Once again, the court ruled that Ori had illegally withheld money from a client and ordered him to return the $900, plus court costs, for a total of $1,016.

[Kevin Minor vs. OCF Realty, Philadelphia Municipal Court, 10/29/10]
[Statement of Claim, Notice of Judgement]

The Case of C. Francisco Buitrago

Mr. Buitrago entered into a lease with Ori’s OCF Realty on August 20, 2008 and put down a security deposit in the amount of $1,050. He vacated the property the next year on August 31, 2009. He requested his security deposit be returned, but he never got it back. He wrote another letter on October 29, 2009, but was still rejected. So in February of 2010, he filed a claim in Philadelphia Municipal Court. Finally, in April 2010, Ori’s firm gave in and settled the case with Mr. Buitrago.

[C. Francisco Buitrago vs OCF Realty, Philadelphia Municipal Court, 2/16/10]
[Statement of Claim, Settlement]

Ori Feibush’s Company Promises, but Never Delivers

In August 2008, three plaintiffs, Andrea Roble, Glenn Roble, and Kathleen Barnes, entered into a rental agreement and paid OCF Realty with two certified checks totaling $3,600. The three tenants moved out in August 2009, returning the keys and leaving the property in good condition. In September 2009 the plaintiffs received a letter from OCF Realty promising to return their $3,600 security deposit. By November 2009, the deposit was still unreturned, so the plaintiffs filed suit in Philadelphia Municipal Court. Not until February 2010 did Ori and his firm finally throw in the towel and settle the case.

[Andrea Roble, et al. vs. OCF Realty, Philadelphia Municipal Court, 11/5/09]
[Statement of Claim, Settlement]

If, as Mr. Feibush has asserted, he believes his business experience is what best prepares him to serve on council, it appears that he’s raising more questions than he’s answering.

Our neighborhood and Philadelphia itself is at a crossroads, as issues have emerged and at every decision point, the Point Breeze Organizing Committee has raised the questions, “Who benefits? Who decides?”

The above pattern is a disturbing reminder of who benefits when Mr. Feibush is in charge and more importantly, who doesn’t. However, it is the voters of the 2nd District who will get to decide who represents us in City Hall.

The 2nd District is not for sale! Vote May 19th!



8 jarring facts about income and housing in Philadelphia.

The below facts have been identified through research of The Development Without Displacement Campaign of which The Point Breeze Organizing Committee is a proud member.

Featured image

1.  37% of Philadelphia households today earn less than $25,000/year

2.  42% of renters in the year 2000 paid too much of their income on rent.**

3.  52% of renters in the year 2012 paid too much of their income on rent.

4.  Every Council District has at least 45% of households that pay too much on rent.

5.  In North Philadelphia, from 2000-2012, incomes decreased by 6%.  At the same time, the average sale price of a house increased by 200%

6. In West Philadelphia, from 2000-2012, the average rent increased by 19%. In that same period, income decreased by 11%

7.  In South Philadelphia, from 2000-2012, the average cost of a house increased by 184%.  In that same period income increased by 4%. *^

8.  In South Philadelphia, from 2000-2012, the racial composition became 29% less Black.

**Too much is defined as more than 30% of their income.

*^ As is suggested by looking at fact #7 & #8 next to each other, even though there was an income increase in the district, there is unfortunately no reason to believe, that the income increase was experienced by long-term residents, rather it appears the new composition accounted for the increase in income level.

Corbett’s Gifts and Favors


Progressive PA Rising

Government benefits received by some who gave gifts to Corbett
The Pennsylvania People’s Campaign, Progressive Philly Rising

Executive Summary: Is Tom Corbett Above the Law?

While the legislature and the attorney general’s office have investigated gift-taking by members of the General Assembly and a judge, no investigation has begun of the governor’s taking of gifts and the receipt of government benefits by some of those who gave. This report documents shocking facts that demand an investigation and pose a stark question: is Gov. Corbett above the law?

Gov. Corbett has delivered substantial benefits to several people and companies that have made large gifts to him and his wife. The benefits provided by the governor include appointments to state commissions, appointments to the board of the state-funded and controlled Team Pennsylvania which the governor co-chairs, a contract worth hundreds of thousands of dollars entered into without competitive bidding, and regulatory relief…

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Vote to Put People First; Endorsements for 36th Ward (D) Committee people.

(***Endorsements below)


The Point Breeze Organizing Committee would like to remind Philadelphia and specifically the residents of Point Breeze of the importance of voting this tomorrow, May 20th.

As most of you are aware, this election is especially important given the recent litigation efforts made by real estate developer Ori Feibush to challenge long-time committeeperson incumbents and replace them with people more inclined to support his profit-over-people form of development.

Mr. Feibush, a millionaire, used his resources to support the filing of 75+ lawsuits to push many long-term residents and incumbents off the ballot.  It is yet another sign that Mr. Feibush and many of his supporters have no plans of integrating into the neighborhood, rather they are attempting a hostile take-over.

It is also another step in his political effort to oust 2nd District Councilman Kenyatta Johnson next May.  Councilman Johnson, is from the neighborhood, the first African-American to hold the seat, and has maintained that there must be a place for affordable housing, and other policies that protect long-term residents from economic displacement.

Mr. Feibush, OCF Realty, and the moneyed interests they represent rely on the weakening of democratic institutions to advance their profit over people development ambitions.  So, it is of the utmost importance that people get out and VOTE.


After careful consideration, the Point Breeze Organizing Committee is proud to endorse the following candidates for 36th Ward Democratic Committee Person:


Div Name  Press Button#
1 Tiye Thompson 134
1 Anthony Tappe Write-In
2 Constance Goodwin 133
2 William Goodwin 137
3 Dawn Chavous 134
3 Dita White 136
4 Delores Richardson 133
4 Gaynell Scott Write-in
5 Harold James 133
5 Linda Thomas Write-In
6 Karen James 133
6 Mary Smitherman 134
7 Jokon Brown Hart 133
7 Tiphanie White 134
8 Nakia Carr 136
8 Maxine Hayman 137
9 Tanasha Vann Write-in
9 Wilma Frazier Write-in
10 Lisa Birckett 133
10 Jonathan Abbott 134
11 Luther Carr 133
11 Jacqueline Johnson 134
12 Marie Hightower 133
12 Dorothy Wright 134
13 Daralis Lippett Simms 133
13 Carolyn Ramsey 134
14 Marlene Schuck 133
14 Thomas Dever Jr 134
15 Joseph Middleton 133
15 Donald Dudley 135
16 George Upshur 133
16 Ralanda King 135
17 Darlene Swint Write-in
17 Audrey Hill 134
18 Malik Cherry 133
18 Ethel Charles Write-in
19 Beresford Gabbadon 133
19 Alice Gabbadon 137
20 Terry Wiggins 133
20 Angela Parks 134
21 Willie Allen III 133
21 Ervin Davis Write-in
22 Patricia Cormier 133
22 Mary Blackwell 137
23 Edmond Wiggins 134
23 Sherri Stanford 135
24 Katherine Thomas 133
24 Joseph Cifoni 134
25 Barbara Gillespie 133
25 Joanne Kopaczewski 134
26 Tammy Smith 133
26 Basym Hasan 134
27 Thomas McCormick 133
27 Robert Gormley Jr 134
28 Roosevelt Brant Jr 133
28 Valerie Carr 134
29 Tulsa Wills 133
29 Jennifer Norwood 134
30 Christal Heath 134
30 Harriett Henley 135
31 Daria Ward 133
31 Jefferson Branch 134
32 Kevin Hannah 134
32 Tara Hannah Taliaferro 135
33 Shawn Gormley 133
33 Kellyann Haggerty 135
34 Rita Butler Write-in
34 Stanley McCant Write-in
35 Juanita Jarrett 134
35 Michael Bell 137
36 Pamela Stroman Gibson 134
36 Alexandria Gibson 136
37 Jennifer Devor 133
37 Rashid Hughes 134
38 William Ryan Jr 133
38 Juanita Davis 134
39 Marjorie Jones 136
39 Jennie Burton 137
40 Karen Harris 134
40 Judy Walston 135
41 Darlene Lewis 134
41 Dionne Bracley 135




4/16/14: Unity Statement on the ICE Hold victory from the Philadelphia Family Unity Network


We stand here today as members of the Philadelphia Family Unity Network to celebrate the historic victory of ending ICE holds in Philadelphia. This moment represents years of organizing, coalition building, and hard work by community groups across Philadelphia against immoral deportation policies. It also represents successful partnerships with Mayor Nutter’s administration and City Council, who have worked alongside our community organizations to make Philadelphia a more welcoming city.


Today, we are proud to show what a community united for justice looks like in Philadelphia. Our coalition led this campaign by building strength and solidarity across all communities, and fought for the rights of all individuals to remain in the city they call home, including our members and our loved ones who are currently or formerly incarcerated.


On March 12th at the City Council hearing on ICE holds, Director of Public Safety Michael Resnick testified on the city’s…

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Stardom Doesn’t Change Where You’re From

Richard Sherman writes about DeSean Jackson’s departure from the Eagles.

Karen Lewis. Standardized testing and the Eugenics movement.

Fred Klonsky


Karen GJ Lewis is the President of the Chicago Teachers Union and National Board Certified Teacher.

Many people who are convinced that standardized tests are reliable and valid indicators of student learning are not only sadly mistaken, but they are often people who also support policies that harm children, teachers and schools. This is unfortunate for a variety of reasons, the least of which is that unions, think tanks and other entities no longer pursue alternatives—multiple measures. Researchers have pointed out that standardized tests do not cover 70 percent of teachers, but rather than invest in multiple measures, companies respond with a plan to develop more tests.

What many people do not know is that the use of standardized tests has its origins in the Eugenics movement, where basic tenets assert that certain races are inferior to others biologically and intellectually. From our 21st century perspective, we can look back in…

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