The Squatters' rights and Cooperative Ownership in the LES Libguide is an overview of the political, public history of squatters' collective struggle in reclaiming New York City-owned abandoned buildings in the 1990s through 2000s, in the form of a bibliographic resource guide to the movement's primary and secondary sources. This guide is meant as a starting point for deeper archival research and study. Welcome!
"You are homeless, living with friends, unable to afford your rent and live satisfactorily. Whatever the reason, need or desire, you decide to squat. In other words, you decide that you are going to make a place to live in an abandoned building. You are going to renovate a vacant space in order to secure the kind of life you desire. Squatting is about self-determination, taking control of your life, your resources and doing for yourself with the skills and energy you possess." -- F. Morales, ABC's of Squatting
Here's what New York State Law, Real Property Actions and Proceedings Law Article 5 says about squatters, or the legal term "adverse possessors:"
§ 501. Adverse possession; defined. For the purposes of this article: 1. Adverse possessor. A person or entity is an "adverse possessor" of real property when the person or entity occupies real property of another person or entity with or without knowledge of the other's superior ownership rights, in a manner that would give the owner a cause of action for ejectment.