"Eviction notices" shake Detroit community

Jun 7, 2011

Residents in a Southwest Detroit neighborhood found what appeared to be eviction notices on their front doors Monday. The notices were actually flyers distributed by the group Americans for Prosperity in the city’s Delray neighborhood. The flyers warned residents that the state will seize their homes, if legislators approve a plan for a new bridge connecting Detroit and Windsor. Scott Hagerstrom, director of the Michigan chapter of Americans for Prosperity, says the signs were just an attempt to inform Delray residents about the state’s intentions.

“We may have startled a few people, but we did want to startle them. We want to let them know that this is the time to take action. It’s the truth. It’s what government officials want to do. They want to take this neighborhood and tear it down. They’ve made no bones about that."

But Detroit State Representative Rashida Tlaib says the apparent eviction notices caused “chaos” in her district. Tlaib, who supports the public bridge project, calls the flyers “immoral” and “a scam.”

“The residents were scared, they were confused…and it created this huge chaotic response from the community."

Tlaib says it’s unclear whether Americans for Prosperity is working for the owners of the Ambassador Bridge, who have been trying to kill the public project. Americans for Prosperity says it opposes the new bridge on ideological grounds.