PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Portland Tenants United and City Commissioner-elect Chloe Eudaly are calling for urgent action to protect renters in Portland.

In a press conference Friday morning, Eudaly and members of the coalition of labor and community leaders promoted the “Keep Portland House” campaign, which calls for lawmakers in Salem to overturn the state’s band on rent control.

They also want to declare an immediate rent freeze and end no-cause evictions in Portland until policy solutions are in place to improve conditions for renters.

“We’ve been in an officially-declared housing emergency for over a year. Despite that, tenant protections – the most critical component to preventing homelessness – have not meaningfully improved and conditions continue to worsen,” Eudaly said in a press release. “My election, and the passage of Portland’s housing bond, present a clear and obvious mandate to City Council to act.”

One landlord at the rally explained why he’s not increasing rent.

“We’re seeing a squeeze here because the rents are too high for anybody to spend money on anything else,” he said. “That’s really affecting our economy. So this rent crisis doesn’t just hurt people who are renting, it hurts everybody.”

The group says protecting tenants is the most important component of preventing homelessness.