Washington, D.C. – Thousands of advocates, organizations, and elected officials in 27 states across the country are participating in the Our Homes, Our Voices National Housing Week of Action, May 1-8, led by the National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC), calling for increased federal investments in affordable housing and community development.
While America is in the midst of an affordable housing crisis, the Trump administration has proposed massive cuts in funding for critical affordable housing programs in fiscal year 2019 (FY19) and for reductions in housing support for millions of families. The administration has proposed to slash affordable housing by $11 billion in FY19 compared to current levels and to impose rent increases, arbitrary work requirements, and other burdens on millions of low income families who receive federal housing assistance through the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). These cuts in housing assistance would leave even more low income people—including seniors, people with disabilities, veterans, families with children, and other vulnerable populations—without stable homes, making it harder for them to climb the economic ladder to achieve financial security and live with dignity.
Advocates are demanding that lawmakers reject the administration’s proposals and support greater investments in addressing homelessness and housing poverty in America. More than 90 events and activities are planned for the Our Homes, Our Voices National Housing Week of Action, including rallies, teach-ins, site visits, performance art, press conferences with local policymakers, call-in days, letter writing campaigns, and much more. MicroJuris Puerto Rico has scheduled an “Invisible before the Law: Right and Inequality in Puerto Rico” symposium with legal housing advocates and policy makers. The Fairbanks Housing & Homeless Coalition in Alaska will host a community conversation about homelessness and social services with local housing agencies. And the City of Cambridge, MA, is leading eight events, including a poster exhibit, a panel book discussion, and an affordable housing rally at City Hall. For a list of events happening around the country, see: https://www.ourhomes-ourvoices.org/local-events
Through advocacy efforts like these and others during and after the 2017 Housing Week of Action, advocates and Congressional champions secured a 10% increase to federal investments in affordable housing for FY18. But grave threats remain for FY19 and beyond given the administration’s proposals.
“It is more important than ever to advocate for vulnerable families who are constantly threatened with shortsighted policies that would force them to have to choose between paying for rent, food, healthcare, or other basic necessities,” said NLIHC President and CEO Diane Yentel. “This week, thousands are rallying around a shared demand for greater investments in affordable homes and strong communities. The 10% increase to federal investments in affordable housing attained by housing advocates for FY18 was a critical first step toward addressing homelessness and housing poverty in America, but much more is needed to ensure everyone has a safe, accessible and affordable home.”
To learn more about the Our Homes, Our Voices campaign, visit: https://www.ourhomes-ourvoices.org/