“Housing is a right in America,” President Biden said last month as he signed an executive order promising to address racial discrimination and inequality in housing. On Tuesday, the administration announced an extension of the federal foreclosure moratorium through the end of June.
While this temporary measure is a necessary Band-Aid on a gaping economic wound, housing is not yet a right in this country — far from it. Mr. Biden’s emphasis on redressing racial inequity in housing provides a welcome contrast, though, to the long history of the federal government’s housing policies, which created barriers to safe, affordable housing in all 50 states, especially for communities of color.Read more
Eva Rosen, The Nation, March 15, 2016, available here
Vouchers shouldn’t merely keep people off the streets; they should help families move to neighborhoods with more opportunities.
By untethering federal housing aid from the disadvantaged neighborhoods to which it was once attached, vouchers offer millions of poor Americans the opportunity to move to a new neighborhood where streets are safe, schools have resources to teach their children, and jobs are bountiful.
Realizing the Housing Voucher Program’s Potential to Enable Families to Move to Better Neighborhoods
Barbara Sard and Douglas Rice, Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, January 12, 2016, available here
Housing Choice Vouchers help families afford decent, stable housing, avoid homelessness, and make ends meet. They also enable children to grow up in better neighborhoods and thereby enhance their chances of long-term health and success. Still, 280,000 children in families using vouchers lived in extremely poor neighborhoods in 2014.
A new CBPP paper shows that Housing Choice Vouchers could do much more to help children grow up in safer, low-poverty neighborhoods with good schools.Read more