Tattoos Are People Too

Ouch!  A reader asks why we’d cover a “dubious and dangerous” enterprise as Frequency Tattoo Company on Ridge. We rush to the defense of John Howie & his talented crew — and tattooed people everywhere (many we know and love). 

EastFallsLocal collage Reader Feedback trouble with tattoos

Comment from Brian Faulkner submitted 2/29  9:21 pm:

I’ve been reading East Falls Local for the better part of a year now and I love the information and perspective it provides. That said, I was a bit troubled by this article, which I read in the print edition of your most recent issue. Diane Batalsky profiled Frequency Tattoo “artist” John Howie.  

I’m sure that Mr. Howie does great work…but I find the presence of a tattoo shop in our hood to be both dubious and dangerous. As you are well aware, tattoos are still used to convey messages among criminals. For example, a tattoo of a teardrop under one’s eye represents that the wearer has killed someone!

While not all tattoos convey criminal messages, they have traditionally represented lifestyles and attitudes that have no business in East Falls. To add insult to injury, tattoo needles are notorious for spreading both hepatitis and HIV.

The big, beautiful parrot that Ms. Batalsky had tattooed to her leg is certainly a work of art, but it belongs on a traditional canvas and not on her body.

So, I was very confused when I saw this article…why would East Falls Local print something about a tattoo shop? Then a red light went off when I looked on the back page and saw an ad for Frequency Tattoo company. Is East Falls Local writing for Fallsers? Or have they become the mouthpiece of their advertisers?

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Wow — so much here! Before I step aside and let Diane explain where her artwork belongs, allow me to chime in for East Falls Local:

Hello! I’m glad you’ve been enjoying our blog & publication, and I am sorry that Diane’s review of her experiences with a local business has troubled you. Your concerns, however, seem colored by pre-conceived notions about tattoos that, frankly, are terribly dated.

Really, I am kind of embarrassed for you, espousing these opinions in 2016. As one of our readers, I must assume you are an otherwise super-cool guy, and somehow missed the boat on tattoos. No worries, we’ll bring you up to speed!

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Let’s talk about tattoos. Who has them these days? Ummmmm… EVERYONE?!  I mean, I don’t (nor does Steve) but according to a Fox News report from 2014, 20% of voters — one in five Americans over 18 — has at least one tattoo.  In the 26 – 40 age group, that percentage is 40%!! And by all estimates, the trend is only growing.

Far from being seedy joints for society’s outcasts, tattoo shops like Frequency are part of a massive $3 BILLION industry that includes state-of-the-art tools, custom inks, and sterilizing equipment to rival any medical clinic.

7-18 Facebook meme Best 10 tattoo shops in Philly

Frequency Tattoo is legit — barely two years old, the shop’s already won awards and rave reviews. Please: what about any of the photos in Diane’s blog post looks dubious or dangerous to you?

Did you mean to be condescending, when you put quotes around “artist” in reference to John Howie? Cause FYI, both John & David McCall have Fine Arts degrees — in fact, they first met as students at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts. They’re each way experienced in various creative fields; both still paint & create art in addition to tattooing for a living — which they are spectacularly good at, btw. David is currently touring France as a guest artist at several shops around the country.

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FUN FACT: Neither John nor David tattoos hate symbols, facial teardrops, “white power” insignias, etc if you’re wondering. A scroll down Frequency’s Instagram reveals *NO* gang signs but lots of hearts, flowers, birds… a pine cone… ooh! A dragon! And all the bones in the spine… A donut… A pineapple… A kitty!

Sure, some skulls and stuff too but I dunno, man. These images suggest artistic, imaginative customers — not criminals. Take my friend Diane, who wrote the blog post for us: she’s a middle-aged (sorry D!) Jewish advertising professional. Off the top of my head, my other friends with tattoos include a nurse, a doctor, a jewelry shop owner, a financial planner…

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Still, prejudices like yours continue. Which is why we asked Diane to review her experience: to demonstrate for East Falls Local what it’s like to get a tattoo from the new shop on Ridge.  We’d tag along and document the whole thing in pics & video, and make a cool blog post!

Our readers enjoy hearing about local business — Diane’s review was 100% honest, she has been thrilled with Frequency Tattoo and is delighted to tell the world. She even came into the city for the Tattoo Convention last month to help support the shop.

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And so did we.  Not because John paid us (he didn’t), but because he’s a talented local artist who owns both a home and a business here. And when a local shop like Frequency Tattoo looks good, East Falls looks good.

That’s really the bottom line, right?

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East Falls Local exists because so much awesomeness was going on here, uncelebrated, that we had to scoop it up into a blog. Frequency Tattoo was one of the first local businesses on our radar — have you been there? It’s an amazing space, the opposite of every “tattoo parlor” stereotype.

How about a personal tour?! We’d love to introduce you to John and let him show you around his clean, modern shop. We’ll even treat you to a local meal as part of the deal! Whaddaya say?! We’d love to help change your mind, or even just broaden it a little, if we can. Email us, please, if you’re interested.

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You can choose to look down your nose at a local business if you really want to, but what good does that do? Why not educate yourself on what’s really going on in our community, and help spread the word about good people doing cool stuff in East Falls.

PS:   We do NOT take payment for our blog posts. Or rebuttals. But East Falls businesses do tend to support each other, which frankly is quite nice.

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(ha)

29 Comments

  • Jacky

    “Really, I am kind of embarrassed for you, espousing these opinions in 2016. ” Nailed it. What a ridiculous letter.

    I especially enjoyed the part where the letter writer explains what does and does not “belong” on another person’s body. Oh, and this little gem: “While not all tattoos convey criminal messages, they have traditionally represented lifestyles and attitudes that have no business in East Falls.” Honestly, it would bother me more if this writer’s attitude were representative of East Falls (for the record, I don’t think that is the case).

    I don’t have any tattoos myself, but I’m glad to have Frequency Tattoo in the neighborhood.

  • Gina Snyder

    Glad to have John Howie and Frequency Tattoo in the East Falls Riverfront Business District. My office is a stone’s throw away. Happy to see the nice sign and storefront and a wonderful neighbor doing business in East Falls.
    – Gina Snyder
    Director
    East Falls Dev. Corp.
    4133 Ridge Ave, First Floor

  • Barbara

    Wow. I don’t usually respond to posts but this letter is ridiculous. It’s upsetting that people would be judged in 2016 because they have tattoos. I’ve been told that I don’t look like a “tattoo person”. What the heck does a “tattoo person” look like? I have a college education and run my own business, in East Falls… my tattoos are an expression of myself and are extremely meaningful to me. I wonder if this kind of reasoning is keeping other establishments (whatever they may be) out East Falls…

    I’ll admit, after reading this letter I think I’m going to see about getting my next tattoo from Frequency.

  • Diane Batalsky

    I will start this response to Mr. Faulkner with I once believed the same as you, the stereo types about tattoos, the people that had them and the shops. That all changed for me about 25 years ago. My best friend growing up, who is a few years older than me, had a few small hidden tattoos. I actually went with her for her first one and she returned the favor a few years later. I’ll admit back then for a few young girls it was scary and intimidating to walk into a tattoo parlor and for the most part we weren’t treated very nicely but she got the tattoo anyway.

    Shortly after that, I met a very close friend of my Stepmothers and she was heavily tattooed, arms legs, chest, back, she was covered. I was first taken back by her appearance but she turned out to be the sweetest woman and she also certified me in Scuba Diving and was a great teacher. She is happily married to a non-tattooed amazing guy and has two amazing kids.

    This brings me to my first tattoo. Since I was certified and planned on diving on Bonaire, the island my Stepmother works on as a professional Scuba Diver, under water environmentalist, author, lecturer, former school teacher and debate coach, I wanted a tattoo of a dolphin. It’s an old pirates tale that having a dolphin on you will protect you from sharks in the ocean, I know it’s silly but I really wanted it since I was going to be diving more. I went down to South Street and went to Body Graphics for my first tattoo, best friend by my side. I chickened out and left. Besides my fear of needles and passing out from them, the Jewish guilt I had been raised on got to me and I felt bad going against the religion and it’s beliefs even though I really wasn’t’ a practicing Jew. I spoke to my father and he said it was my body, do what you want, it’s your choice. I thought about that but still the guilt was taking over. I actually called the Rabbi that did my Grandfather’s burial service to talk to him about this. He was a very nice man and gave me all the time on the phone I needed. Surprisingly to say, by the end of the conversation, he told me to get the tattoo if I really wanted it. The laws about this now a days have to change. I found out any plastic surgery is against Jewish law, go figure, huh? Ear piercing too! That was it, I was convinced; I’m getting this tattoo. I called my best friend asked her to go with me again after work, she agreed. I called my dad, informed him of my decision and he told me, great, if you get it, wake me up to show me, if not I’ll see you in the morning. I was still scared; terrified actually, I was so worried I was going to pass out.

    An older woman approached me and asked if I wanted to get tattooed. I told her yes but I was shaking and she saw that. She talked to me about the process and we picked out my dolphin. The whole time she was trying to calm me down, she also would say, if you aren’t ready, we’re always here, no pressure. I was determined to do this. I warned her, I have been known to pass out from needles, she said, it’s not like getting needles which actually helped me. She took me in a private room; got a nice padded table for me to lie down on told me she would touch me with the machine first without any ink to see if I could tolerate it. My reaction was, THAT IS IT?! She said yeah, I said go for it, I’m fine. 45 minutes later, I had my first tattoo; I still have it to this day. I will never cover it, it means too much to me for so many reasons. The lady that tattooed me is actually a world famous tattoo artist due to being one of the first women to be a tattoo artist. As I was leaving I was already planning my next tattoos. I was hooked.

    Over the years, I have added to my collection of tattoos and for the most part, they all have very deep sentimental meanings to me. There are few just for fun, like my Snoopy collection of tattoos which I will add more of him. I have been tattooed in a several different states and countries and I have met the nicest people at the tattoo shops all over the world. Tattoo shops have changed. They are no longer the scary place with the grumpy old men and sailors hanging out, which leads me to Frequency Tattoo Company. I have been too many tattoo shops and have had good experiences and got nice tattoos but I have always been searching for that one tattoo artist and shop where I feel I really connect with them. That is Frequency for me. I knew right away, John Howie was going to be my guy. I got a great vibe from him and he totally understood what I wanted out of this first tattoo he was going to do for me.

    Bonus, he was close to where I grew up so I knew exactly where he was located and turns out my friends Carolyn and Steve lived in East Falls too. I asked if they knew him or about the place and they said yeah, they had briefly met him but were interested in finding out more about him and the shop. We all arranged our calendars for me to get my first and largest at this point tattoo from John Howie. The shop is amazing. It is beautiful and very inviting. I instantly felt welcomed by both John and David and excited to see how this was going to turn out. It was a special tattoo for me, it was in memory of my mother and I really wanted it to be perfect. John did not disappoint. I was thrilled. We were already talking about my next tattoo from him. They have gotten bigger and more intense, hence the Bandit tattoo, also a very meaning tattoo for me.

    I have raised Bandit from when she was two years old and she will be 40 in July. I don’t have kids; she is the closest I am every going to have to having a child and trust me it’s like a having a two year old that can bite your finger off at any time if she wanted too.

    My point to all of this and I realize I have gone on and on and you probably don’t care or stopped reading at this point but the stereo types about tattoos and all they encompass has to change, really stop for good. Like Carolyn, I have a ton of friends with tattoos; they range from nurses and doctors as well, but also police officers, former Marines, firefighters, teachers, business professionals and yes of course some musicians, can’t leave them out. I have worked in advertising for many years and have met lots of people in the industry with tattoos.

    I actually hired a young lady who was extremely qualified for the position and she was a great employee. Her mother was so disappointed she didn’t hide her tattoos on her foot for the interview. I saw the tattoos, didn’t mention them, I loved her also because she was a graduate of Temple University as am I and in the same major. Anyway, she told me after I hired her what her mother was worried about and she told her mother after the interview, I don’t think they are going to hold the tattoos against me for this job; the Supervisor who interviewed me has MAJOR tattoos on her legs and ankles. She is now a very successful, young woman in the field of advertising.

    People with tattoos are everywhere these days, things are changing and we need to put the past behind us. Also, I really never visited East Falls or Carolyn and Steve, they always come over to my house to visit but Frequency has brought me to this great neighborhood a lot in the past year and I also have enjoyed going to the local bars and restaurants such as Billy Murphy’s, we try to go there after my tattoo sessions. I never would have patronized them if it weren’t for Frequency, John, Dave and now Anna.

    Oh yeah, one more thing, I also got my childhood best friend that I got tattooed with the first time to John and he fixed a messed up tattoo she got somewhere else and made it great. She is now a steady customer as well and she travels from Norristown to see John.

    • Sheryl

      The one thing I didn’t post in my comment to the article was that I can vouch for the credibility and character of Diane . She is a wonderful person with Beautiful Tattoo’s and if the people that frequent the shop are like her then Mr Faulkner u are lucky!It could be worse! I live in a beautiful condo in a great neighborhood except for the gogo bar across the street that many times the patrons leaving have fights, shoot off guns ,race cars, are loud & obnoxious and leave empty drug bags and condoms in the parking lot I wish that tattoo parlor was in my neighborhood instead! Thanks again Diane your article was great!

  • Anonymous but concerned

    Whoever wrote this letter grosses me out. Why don’t you go back to whatever rural podunk town you came from? Oh wait, you can’t because even those towns have tattoo shops. I feel bad for you that you feel the need to impose your own personal beliefs and preferences on other people. Frequency is an award winning establishment. Would you rather have a failing business in East Falls?

    • MorganB

      Hey that wasn’t nice… some of my best friends are peckerwoods! 🙂

      John, Anna, and Dave are all really good peeps. We’re lucky to have them in East Falls both as neighbors and as a top-quality local business.

      (That’s my arm up on the upper-right corner – it’s the fish demon from Martin Schangauer’s Temptation of St. Anthony)

  • Amy

    Great article! We are new to EF but we love the community spirit here and how there is so much support for fellow East Fallers! Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, and your response was informative and respectful. Great job! See you all at Frequency!

  • Sheryl

    I’m surprised whomever wrote that after seeing all the different responses since has not commented yet so either they are embarrassed or they are just ignorant and set in their ways but I can’t see how theses replys wouldn’t give them a change of heart cause it gave me an entire new outlook. As for me I probably won’t ever get a tattoo I couldn’t even get my ears pierced till I was almost 40 I’m a big chicken but I have known many who have them but that’s their choice ! My old aide has like 30 , my daughter has a few and she even created what she wanted them to put on her back and its beautiful and tasteful and a work of art! I too at one time couldn’t understand why anyone would do that to themselves but I would never judge them but it was cause I was very misinformed as it seems this writer is too but I hope he will look into it more just to get a different outlook and if he doesn’t change his mind so be it but don’t be so ignorant to not try . in this day with all the violence and bad stuff happening we don’t need to be negative when we don’t know then we pass that on to people around us and their poor judgement turns to haters like it has with race, religion,gay,etc. and we don’t need that. One last thing I love that they have fixed up east falls and main st and its wonderful to live in a beautiful Neighborhood and what makes as u say ” your hood” a great place to live is not only the local shops but its the local people that make a difference so before you condem something you know nothing about maybe try to check that out first and if ur that miserable you can move to where u think its better but if the shop and people there are as nice as it sounds then it should be OK. Even if you don’t agree then Agree to Disagree and just be a good neighbor. There are much more problems in the world today that this. Let it go!

  • Sue P

    Wow, if Brian Faulkner had such strong, antiquated opinions about tattoos, maybe he should have gone to the zoning meeting when the issue came up. Railing about it after the fact is kind of pointless, just like telling someone where their body art belongs.

  • John Howie

    I am the owner of Frequency, the dubious Mr. Howie. Thank you to those who’ve responded to this article, I’m glad to know that we have friends in the neighborhood. Mr. Faulkner brings up not uncommon pre conceived notions with regard to tattooing. I’d like to thank him for giving me the opportunity to explain how it works, and hopefully ease his valid concerns and anyone else that may share his opinion.
    My facility and all artists working there are licensed and regularly inspected by the City of Philadelphia Dept. of Public Health. We go above and beyond their requirements, and receive blood borne pathogen and infection control training annually. We provide a sanitary clinical environment for our client’s safety as well as our own. We use single use pre packaged pre sterilized needles, single use ink caps, barrier film on all surfaces. The “tubes” that hold our needles are cleaned and sterilized in-house with our steam process autoclave which is tested monthly. We also have a backup autoclave which is tested should our daily driver be down for repair. After every tattoo all surfaces, equipment, and furniture used for the procedure are cleaned with a tuberculocidal agent to insure all potential pathogens are destroyed.

    There are no documented cases for HIV transmission and tattooing. With regard to Hepatitis C: Studies have shown no evidence of an increased risk in infection if tattoos were given in a professional parlor with proper infection control..
    Here is one:
    http://cid.oxfordjournals.org/content/54/8/1167.full

    There are of course many other pathogens besides the 2 Mr. Faulkner cites that we also meticulously prevent through the practice of Universal Precautions, the same as any conventional medical facility.

    In 15 years of tattooing I have never done a teardrop or any other gang or hate group related imagery, and no one working in my studio will either. This zero tolerance policy is clearly stated in my companies’ S.O.P. I don’t exactly want to attract murderers to East Falls either, which is whom I assume Mr. Faulkner is referring to when he mentions undesired lifestyles and attitudes.

    I love this neighborhood and I love my art form. I have filled my entire life with artistic pursuits. I feel blessed that I get to do this every day in the place I live.
    I welcome any concerned readers to stop by my studio where I will happily educate them on our routine procedures.
    Thanks again everyone, and thank you Mr. Faulkner.

    • Loie

      What a wonderful response and may i say that Dianes tattoes are breathtaking works of art! Next time i am back home in Philly i fully intend on making an appointment myself!
      Poor Mr. Faulkner, there is so much more to see just beyond the tip of your upturned nose!

      • Diane Batalsky

        That would be awesome, I would love to see you and go with you! We can catch up on all of our med crap, heh heh.

  • Lynnette Swanson

    With all of the problems we have in this world, we should not even worry about tattoos and who has or doesn’t have them.
    I am still surprised when people are shocked with the tattoos I have gotten over the years. Every single one of my tattoos has a special meaning and for the most part are not in places where they are typically on public display. To put this in perspective, I am a female professional, I have a Masters degree in Biology along with a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology and Chemistry. I did not get my first tattoo until after I was 50 years old but it was one I had wanted since in my 20’s. I delayed getting that tattoo because of opinions around me similar to those expressed by Mr. Faulkner, adding I kept hearing only sailors and criminals have tattoos. I even consulted with doctors about the safety and any health concerns regarding the tattoo process.

    Having said all of that, tattoos are very personal and although criminals may have them, so so police officers, doctors, school teachers, rock stars, your accountant, and just about anyone in any career field. They are not the typical badges of being a bad boy or girl, but these days are an expression of a person’s personality. I leave you with the following story: my 92 year old Aunt-in-law, who I love dearly (and she has always treated me as a blood relative), happened to see one of my tattoos and she asked me the usual questions. Tears came to her eyes and she hugged me when she heard that the tattoo was in memory of my mother, using symbols that connect me with the life I lived with my mom. She finished with the statement that she hoped I loved her enough to add a symbolic tattoo in memory of her when she’s passed (and you know there will be another star in my constellation on my back, just for her.)
    Don’t judge a person because of tattoos, judge them on how they treat others and animals. That is a truer way to measure a person’s character.

  • Joe Joseph

    The comment “Is East Falls Local writing for Fallsers? Or have they become the mouthpiece of their advertisers?” really struck me. If ‘Brian Faulkner’ really lives in, and supports East Falls, he would realize that the owners AND employees of many respected East Falls businesses are tattooed themselves. Falls Taproom, In Riva, & East Falls Dentististry come to mind.

  • Michael Smith

    I’m not really a tattoo person (though I think they’re beautiful on others) and I am delighted to have Frequency in the neighborhood. The facade is nothing less than a showpiece, and it demonstrates how sharp those storefronts can be if someone tries.

  • Randy Lee

    Pardon if this comment repeats any of the above comments.

    Personally, I would like to know if you have ever been inside the budding business you are trash talking with innuendo and uneducated hearsay? From my understanding, the studio is a nice, clean and client friendly place with incredible artists…and I’m from Pittsburgh, not your “hood”.

    First and foremost, there is NO known case of a person being infected with or spreading the HIV, AIDS or HCV virus’. You’re sadly misinformed through secondary means in the likes of cleansing or religious propaganda. Most important to this point, is that my information isn’t from close minded, uneducated corner dwellers. It comes from Columbia Universities Health Services and the Frascino AIDS Foundation.

    Second, the body has been used for art and adornments since the understanding of man and time. The earliest known man to have ever been found…..had tattoos and no, they weren’t established or intended for a “criminal element or message”. If you do hold that believe, well sir, I understand why you call your community a “hood”.
    Realize that, the original canvas, before canvas existed, were stone walls and the BODY. The artwork itself signifies many different things. From family, personal belief systems, and achievements to simply the things one likes most. I’ve one that was drawn by my daughter when she was 5…it brings a smile every time I look at it and if you called me a criminal for having a flower on my arm..

    Third, as someone who has owned tattoo and piercing studios I can tell you that, professional studios, not some guys basement, are commonly cleaner than your local hospital! They’re using sterilizing units on their tools, liquid sterilizers like Dettol to wipe down their bays and work areas and would NEVER EVER reuse a needle.
    Proudly, My own studio (and I’ve the results on file to prove it) rated an A+ during an unscheduled spore and bacteria check. That’s miles above a hospital waiting room. You could literally eat off the bathroom floor.

    Lastly, to quell your stereotypical, close minded belief that the tattoo community and it’s professionals are a group of rabble rousing criminals of dubious and dangerous nature I’d like to explain something….

    In my studios we refuse to ever do anything that is of a racial, gang, regional gang, hate group or street gang nature and I, as an artists with morals and ethics, would never work at a studio that does such work. I have actually walked away from tons of work by refusing to tattoo names, the face and neck areas too. I have been known to give very low prices, if not free, to those wishing to restart their lives by covering up such disgraceful tattoos.

    Also, to close the issue of clientele, I’ve tattooed everyone from judges, librarians, teachers, lawyers, doctors, pilots, models, actors and of course, the everyday ladies and gentlemen of my community.

    So, in closure, educate yourself before embarrassing yourself with a letter that has no basis other than to prove yourself closed minded and living in a day and age long gone.

    PnbS
    ~Randy Lee
    Actor, Artist, Producer
    and proud owner of 43 tattoos.

  • Moesha

    Conspiracy theory of the day:
    (try to read this in Jesse Ventura’s voice)

    There is no Brian Faulkner. Brian Faulkner is Steve and Carolyn. They made the whole thing up to drum up some butthurt in order to sell more advertising – which, as we ALL know, is QUITE LUCRATIVE in a community of 7,000 people, a fraction of which read this blog/newspaper.

    Brilliant plan! Dr. Evil would be jealous.

    • Steve Fillmore

      Actually we’d like to hire Brian and start up a new type of marketing — “negging” local businesses for fun and profit. Our offer to meet him at Frequency still stands. He’ll at least get a free meal out of us and maybe a free tattoo to boot!

  • Patricia

    This guy Brian Faulkner is an idiot and is using the worst kind of stereotypes about people. And I applaud everyone for critiquing him on his outdated and ridiculous opinions. I read this post and was taken aback by how ignorant this guy was about tattoos. I was also very insulted by his ignorance when he mentioned teardrop tattoos signifying that the wearer has killed someone. Let me tell you this isn’t the case. I’m an African American woman and in my neighborhood many people get teardrop tattoos to signify the loss of a loved one. This guy is really a fool if he thinks this is how HIV and Hepatitis is spread and I really think he should take you up on that offer to take a tour of Frequency Tattoo.

    Now, while this article was interesting, I think it brings up an even more serious problem: so-called “gentrification”…which is what Frequency Tattoo represents. I grew up in East Falls and lived here my whole life. I lived in the Schuylkill Falls Public Housing Project from 1960 until it was demolished in 1996. In 1996 I was given a section 8 housing voucher and had lived in East Falls with that voucher until 2014. As a result of the “gentrification” the landlord incrementally increased the rent price to the point now where my section 8 voucher came nowhere close to covering the monthly rental cost of the apartment. This has been traumatic for me and forced me to move to a foreign neighborhood where I had never lived in my life. In addition, my three grandchildren were attending the Mifflin school, but they were ripped out and forced to attend another school in North Philly where they don’t know anybody. It is dangerous and they have no friends. This has been a very traumatic experience for the kids.

    I am tired of watching silently while all of these changes are made in the name of progress and given a fancy name…”gentrification.” I think it’s time to call it what it really is…rich white people moving in.

    The city is systematically pushing poor people out of East Falls by raising the property values and taxes. Now, need some examples? Let’s just look at the A-Plus which had a completely unnecessary multi-million dollar renovation several years ago. We can also look at the Falls Taproom, previously known as Buckets…It’s still a bar but everything is twice the price.

    It’s wonderful to hear that your tattoo artists, with their fancy art school educations, are prancing around France having the time of their lives, while I’m here working two full time jobs working 80+ hours a week to support my 3 grandchildren. I’d like to invite you to my new neighborhood where the local tattoo shop is in my neighbor Jose’s basement. While it’s great that you’re offering Mr. Faulkner free lunches, what does East Falls Local propose to do about the hundreds of loyal East Falls residents that have been RIPPED out of their beloved East Falls and transplanted to foreign areas all in the name of gentrification.

    One thing I always loved about East Falls was our diversity. Regardless of your background we all were family. Through good times and bad we were always there for each other. You will find no other neighbors in Philly who are as loyal as Fallsers. But this gentrification is not only displacing loyal residents, but will completely end all of the strides in diversity we have made in the last 40 years.

    Ms. Patricia Dobbs

    • Carolyn Fillmore

      Wow, Ms Dobbs! Your comment brings up whole new issues that we agree deserve attention. Please email editor@EastFallsLocal.com to let us know when we can talk more about your experiences in East Falls, and with “gentrification” in general. We’re also on Facebook if you’d prefer to message that way. Really hope to hear from you. We’re eager to write about our transitioning neighborhood from all perspectives.

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