Federal Rental Assistance
Funding Falling as Need Rises
The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP) has released a new paper that found that the number of families with children receiving rental assistance nationally is at the lowest point in a decade.
The number of families with children receiving federal rent subsidies has fallen by over 250,000 (13 percent) since 2004 and is at its lowest point in more than a decade. This alarming decline — which occurred while growing numbers of families have been struggling to pay the rent and make ends meet — underscores why policymakers should expand rental assistance and help more low-income children and their families to live in safe, affordable homes.
One of the trends found by the report is that federal policymakers (as well as state and local housing agencies in some cases) have targeted newly available vouchers towards homeless veterans and people with disabilities. With 2015 federal spending for housing assistance $2.9 billion (6 percent) below 2004 levels, fewer resources are left available for families with children.
“To enable low-income children to have a better chance to thrive, policymakers should substantially expand rental assistance.”
CBPP resource associate Alicia Mazzara writes.
In addition, Mazzarra urges federal lawmakers to appropriate $88 million to fund 10,000 new vouchers for homeless families.