Unaffordable America: Poverty, Affordable Housing and Eviction

Decent, Affordable Housing is A Basic Right for Every American

A March 2015 Fast Focus research brief from the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Institute for Research on Poverty featured “Unaffordable America: Poverty, housing, and eviction” written by Dr. Matthew Desmond that makes the case for affordable housing for all.

Dr. Desmond was the recipient of a 2015 MacArthur “Genius” award winner.

In summary, in the research brief, Princeton sociologist Dr. Desmond “Explores the crisis faced by poor families in finding and maintaining affordable housing … Drawing from his own extensive ethnographic and quantitative research, Desmond outlines the trends that led to the current situation: rising housing costs, stagnant or falling incomes among the poor, and a shortfall of federal housing assistance. As a result of these trends, most poor renting families now devote over half of their income to housing costs, and eviction has become commonplace in low-income communities. Poor single mothers with young children, particularly African Americans, are at especially high risk of eviction. Desmond reviews the consequences of eviction-for parents, children, and neighborhoods-and concludes with suggested policy remedies and a call to pull housing back to the center of the poverty debate.”

On Thursday, October 12, 2017, Dr. Desmond will participate along with U.S. Senator Cory Booker, Professor Paula Franzese, Arnold Cohen and Felipe Chavana in a Conversation About NJ’s Eviction Crisis.

Register Online for the Forum

If space is still available on the morning of October 12, same day registration will also be available by check payment.

There is still time to register for the October 12 Public Policy forum. Join Monarch Housing, NJ Policy Perspective, the Housing and Community Development Network of NJ, the Anti-Poverty Network of NJ, the Supportive Housing Association of NJ, Bridges Outreach, the Mental Health Association in NJ, the Mental Health Association of Essex and Morris, Homeless Solutions and the Drew University Center for Civic Engagement for a Public Policy Forum with Matthew Desmond, Author of Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City, and US Senator Cory Booker (NJ-D.)

The forum will begin at 8:30 a.m. and end at noon at the Concert Hall at Drew University in Madison, NJ. The Public Policy Forum is underwritten by a grant from the Investors Foundation.

Desmond concludes the Fast Focus piece with a call to expand affordable housing in the United States and decreasing the occurrence of evictions. “The high cost of housing is consigning millions of low-income Americans to financial hardship. Providing stable housing and lowering evictions is a human capital investment analogous to education or job training, one that has the potential to decrease poverty and homelessness and stabilize families, schools, and neighborhoods. Expanding access to stable, safe, and affordable housing would help more low- income children to realize their full potential.”

Dr. Desmond is the author of Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City. He asserts in his writing that decent, affordable housing should be a basic right for everybody in this country.

Follow the event on Twitter with the hashtag #EvictionNJForum


Fast Focus Overview

Summary of Evicted

Register Online for the Forum

Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City

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