Ross cites the acute shortage of affordable housing as a primary contributor to homelessness in America and notes, “today, about half of the homeless population in this country work but not earn enough income to pay for housing.”
She concludes that “until we commit to advancing policies and practices that tackle the root economic causes of homelessness and increase the stock of affordable housing, we will not see the sustained progress we need.”
The paper includes the following policy recommendations:
Align homeless and mainstream services.
Expand the supply of affordable housing.
Increase access to affordable housing through improvements to the Housing Choice Voucher program.
Support the financing of affordable housing. Included in the discussion is the recommendation that “any new housing finance system should charge a fee on all mortgage-backed securities that would provide capital for the National Housing Trust Fund and the Capital Magnet Fund, both of which were established by the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008.”
Increase economic stability and address income inequality through moves such as increasing the minimum wage and investments in job creation programs.