Housing Stability Can't Wait. Tell Congress
NLIHC is advocating for a broad array of housing resources and protections - including $100 billion in emergency rental assistance, a national moratorium on evictions and foreclosures, and $11.5 billion to protect people experiencing homelessness, as well as support for public housing authorities and housing providers, among other recommendations - in the possibly final coronavirus relief package. Use any of the following resources to build awareness around the importance of including housing provisions in the next bill.
- DOWNLOAD the “____ can’t wait” poster & print it.
- WRITE in what can’t wait for housing stability.
- SHARE a picture of you holding your sign on social media. Tag your member of Congress who supported or didn’t support the Emergency Rental Assistance and Rental Market Stabilization Act. Use #RentReliefNow
Pre-Filled Posters (right-click to save image & then share on social media)
|DOWNLOAD: "My Family's Health Can't Wait!"||DOWNLOAD: "My Safety Can't Wait!"|
|DOWNLOAD: "My Family Can't Wait!"||DOWNLOAD: "I Can't Wait!"|
|DOWNLOAD: "My Children Can't Wait!"||DOWNLOAD: "My Well-being Can't Wait!"|
|DOWNLOAD: "My American Dream Can't Wait!"||DOWNLOAD: "America Can't Wait!"|
Add a #RentReliefNow frame to your profile photos. Let your friends know that you want Congress to ensure housing stability during and after this pandemic.
Replace your Facebook & Twitter Header Images for a Month
DOWNLOAD: Facebook Header Image
DOWNLOAD: Twitter Header Image
- Sample Social Media Posts
Research shows that reporters and policymakers use social media as a resource for news and issues to track, and this is especially true during this pandemic. Amplify key messages and talking points on social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. Use #RentReliefNow, #HousingStability
- #HousingisHealthcare & #housingassistance during #COVID19 should be considered as urgent a priority as investments in healthcare. Tell your senator that 88% of people want #housingstability during & after #COVID19 https://tinyurl.com/y8m46hep
- Tell Congress that 9 in 10 people want our elected leaders to ensure #housingstability during the #coronavirus outbreak. Congress must enact critical housing investments & protections in the next #COVID19 spending bill https://tinyurl.com/y8m46hep
- #DYK Over 1/3 of Americans say it's a "big concern" that they'll lose their home if they don't receive additional assistance! Tell Congress to TAKE ACTION & ensure #housingstability in the next #COVID19 spending bill https://tinyurl.com/y8m46hep
- #DYK 60% of Americans think the Govt. is doing too little to make sure people can stably house during #COVID19? Tell Congress they can do more. Ask them to immediately enact critical housing protections in the next #COVID19 spending bill https://tinyurl.com/y8m46hep
- 80% of Americans want the Govt. to provide #housingstability during the #COVID19 outbreak. Let your senator know they must do everything they can to enact critical housing investments & protections in the final #COVID19 spending bill https://tinyurl.com/y8m46hep
- An overall majority of Americans want Congress to ensure #housingstability during the #COVID19 outbreak & want Congress to include vital housing investments & protections in the next #COVID19 spending bill. If you agree, tell Congress today https://tinyurl.com/y8m46hep
- Millions of the lowest-income families couldn't afford to pay rent this month & are still unable to pay. #RentReliefNow is needed to stably house families during and after the #COVID19 pandemic. Tell Congress to include it in next relief bill https://tinyurl.com/y7hdl9zb
- Another month has come & gone, millions are out of work, & the #RentisDue! Congress must pass a national moratorium on evictions and emergency #rentalassistance to ensure families will have #housingstability during #COVID19 https://tinyurl.com/y7hdl9zb
- #RentisDue & millions of the lowest-income families can’t afford to pay. Tell Congress $100B in emergency #rentalassistance is needed to avoid a financial cliff & house families during the #COVID19 pandemic https://tinyurl.com/y78fv8fc
- 8 million renters struggled to pay rent before #COVID19. Tell Congress to support housing in #HEROESAct & create a uniform eviction moratorium, protect people experiencing homelessness and provide #RentReliefNow https://tinyurl.com/y7hdl9zb
- Housing & homelessness resources in #CARESAct were an important step, but Congress must do more to address the needs of people who struggled before #COVID19. July's #RentisDue & renters want #RentReliefNow https://tinyurl.com/y7hdl9zb
- Our country can’t contain #COVID19 if millions are without homes or on the brink of homelessness. #RentisDue & families need to keep roofs over their heads during & after this pandemic. We need #RentReliefNow https://tinyurl.com/y7hdl9zb
- Many renters don’t not have enough $ for rent. #Rentalassistance is needed to ensure residents who are out of work & fearing eviction are stably housed during & after #COVID19. #RentReliefNow https://tinyurl.com/y9mmz9hv
- #RentisDue millions of people are out of work & on the brink of eviction. A national uniform eviction moratorium and emergency #rentalassistance are needed to ensure families have #housingstability during & after #COVID19 https://tinyurl.com/y9mmz9hv
- Homelessness is a growing problem, especially during #COVID19. The needs of millions of America’s lowest-income families can’t wait. #RentisDue & we need #RentReliefNow! https://tinyurl.com/y9mmz9hv
- We need resources to protect low-income renters at high risk of #COVID19. #RentisDue & unemployment ins. isn’t enough. Tell Congress the next stimulus package must include emergency #rentalassistance https://tinyurl.com/y9mmz9hv
- It is immoral to kick families & individuals out of their homes during the pandemic. We need resources & protections for people experiencing homelessness who are endangered by #COVID19. #RentReliefNow https://tinyurl.com/y9mmz9hv
- It’s crucial, now more than ever, that federal policymakers prioritize protections for hsg & homelessness. #RentisDue & millions of the lowest-income families are struggling to pay. They need #RentReliefNow https://tinyurl.com/y7hdl9zb
- Low-income Americans are struggling & #RentisDue. Emergency #rentalassistance and other housing protections in #HEROESAct will prevent mass evictions. Tell Congress we need #RentReliefNow https://tinyurl.com/y9mmz9hv
- We need #RentReliefNow to keep families housed & healthy. Families should not have to choose between paying rent & food when the #RentisDue. #Rentalassistance will ensure #housingstability for the lowest-income renters during #COVID19 https://tinyurl.com/y7hdl9zb
- It's never been clearer: #HousingIsHealthcare! #Rentalassistance will keep the lowest-income families housed and also curb the spread of #COVID19 & save lives. Urge Congress to support #RentReliefNow in the next bill https://tinyurl.com/y7hdl9zb
- .[Twitter Handle of Your Senator who Didn’t Support the Emergency Rental Assistance and Rental Market Stabilization Act] #DYK millions of Americans are spending 50%+ of their income on rent? Please don’t leave them behind in the next #COVID19 bill. #RentReliefNow to ensure #housingstability during/after #COVID19 https://tinyurl.com/y9mmz9hv
- .[Twitter Handle of Your Representative who Supported the Emergency Rental Assistance and Rental Market Stabilization Act], thank you for supporting $100B in #rentalassistance in response to #COVID19. Tell all members of Congress to ensure #housingstability in the next relief bill. #RentReliefNow https://tinyurl.com/y78fv8fc
Re-Tweet #RentReliefNow Video: https://tinyurl.com/y9wuhhqt
- Sample Social Media Images
DOWNLOAD shareable images and include these images with your posts on social media.
- Sample Op-Ed
Pitch an Op-Ed to your local outlet explaining your support for housing provisions in the next bill. Word limits vary by outlet but are typically between 700 and 900. CLICK HERE for additional resources to help strengthen an Op-Ed.
Congress Must Provide Emergency Rental Assistance to Protect [STATE RESIDENTS] Experiencing a Financial Shock during Pandemic
The economic fallout of the coronavirus pandemic threatens to significantly exacerbate housing instability and homelessness throughout the U.S., including in [STATE]. Congress must take bold action to help people already struggling to make ends meet by including emergency rental assistance in the next coronavirus-response package.
Even before coronavirus, far too many of America’s lowest-income households—seniors, people with disabilities, low-wage workers—were just one financial shock away from falling behind on their rent and threatened with eviction, and in worst cases, homelessness. With too many renters living paycheck-to-paycheck, a broken-down car, a sick child, or missed days at work can put someone at imminent risk of losing their home. According to the National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC), nearly 11 million households – primarily renters with low incomes – pay more than half of their limited incomes on rent, leaving very little for other basic needs such as groceries, childcare, or medicines. Affordable housing was already out of reach for millions of people, and the economic disruption they are currently experiencing because of coronavirus adds to the many nearly insurmountable challenges low-income renters were already trying to navigate. They are at extreme risk of joining the more than a half-million people who on any given night in America have no home at all, unable to “shelter in place.”
Before coronavirus, there were only [# OF AFFORDABLE HOMES AVAILABLE] rental homes affordable and available for every 100 of the lowest-income renters in [STATE]. Working at the minimum wage of [STATE MINIMUM WAGE] per hour in [STATE], a wage earner needed to work [#FULL-TIME JOBS AT MINIMUM WAGE] full-time jobs or [#WORK HOURS PER WEEK AT MINIMUM WAGE] hours per week to afford a modest one-bedroom apartment. They must work [#FULL-TIME JOBS AT MINIMUM WAGE] full-time jobs or work [#WORK HOURS PER WEEK AT MINIMUM WAGE] hours per week to afford a two-bedroom apartment. The reduction in wages or lost jobs millions of low-wage workers are experiencing during the pandemic will be catastrophic, unless Congress acts immediately to provide emergency rental assistance.
The CARES Act was an important first step but did not provide the resources needed to prevent low-income renters from losing their homes. In the last month, an unprecedented [#OF PEOPLE IN STATE] have applied for unemployment insurance (UI) benefits, but many are being locked out of the process. An estimated 8.9 to 13.9 million people nationally have been unable to use their UI, and only approximately half of all people who qualify for unemployment are receiving benefits. And for those who do receive UI, the benefits – which vary from state-to-state - are often insufficient to relieve the housing cost burdens of the lowest-income households.
For far too long, Congress has underfunded critical, income-targeted programs such as the national Housing Trust Fund, Housing Choice Vouchers, and programs to repair public housing, worsening the nation’s affordable housing crisis. They must act now to mitigate the economic shock millions of Americans are currently facing due to coronavirus. NLIHC estimates that [AMOUNT NEEDED] in emergency rental assistance is needed in [STATE] to keep families stably housed. At least $100 billion is needed nationally. Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Representatives Maxine Waters (D-CA), Denny Heck (D-WA) and more than 39 other original cosponsors in the Senate and 155 original cosponsors in the House, introduced the Emergency Rental Assistance and Rental Market Stabilization Act to invest that level of funding for such emergency rental assistance. This proposal has since been incorporated into the HEROES Act introduced by Speaker Pelosi. Cosponsors of this bill must continue to champion these critically important proposals in negotiations and work to ensure that Congress include them in the next legislative package.
It is not just housing advocates calling for emergency rental assistance. Leaders in health, education, hunger, faith, civil rights, environmental protection, and others are calling for the same. Groups like [2 NON-HOUSING GROUPS IN OR AROUND YOUR STATE THAT SIGNED THE OSAH LETTER] understand that stable housing is the foundation for one’s wellbeing and is desperately needed now.
At a time when our collective health depends on people’s ability to stay at home, it has never been clearer that housing is healthcare. Without emergency rental assistance, we will likely see even more people become homeless or be forced to double or triple up with other families. Overcrowding of households, sleeping in congregate shelters and living outside under the elements all lead to increased infections. Lives are at risk.
During this pandemic, the least Congress must do is ensure everyone is stably housed. This is not just an economic necessity, but a moral and health imperative. We must protect those who are most at risk during this pandemic.