News & Event
Courtesy of National Grid
Washington, DC – A diverse range of organizations from various sectors announced a new campaign today to increase affordable housing for America’s most vulnerable communities.
The Opportunity Starts at Home campaign launched today at the National Low Income Housing Coalition’s (NLIHC’s) Housing Policy Forum in Washington, DC. With financial support from the Funders for Housing and Opportunity, NLIHC launched this new multi-sector affordable homes campaign together with the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, Children’s HealthWatch, Make Room, and the National Alliance to End Homelessness, and with a steering committee that includes Catholic Charities USA, Children’s Defense Fund, Community Catalyst, Food Research and Action Center, NAACP, National Alliance on Mental Illness, National Association of Community Health Centers, National Education Association, and UnidosUS.
Stakeholders from multiple sectors are increasingly recognizing the importance of affordable housing to their own priorities and goals. The Opportunity Starts at Home campaign seeks to mobilize powerful new constituencies beyond housing to ensure that people with the lowest incomes have access to safe, decent, affordable housing in neighborhoods where everyone has equitable opportunities to thrive.
Recent NLIHC research shows the U.S. has a shortage of 7.2 million rental homes affordable and available to extremely low income (ELI) renters, and 11 million ELI renter households are severely housing cost-burdened, spending more than half of their incomes on housing. There are only 35 affordable and available rental homes for every 100 ELI households nationwide, and no state has an adequate supply of affordable rental housing for the lowest income renters. Just one out of four eligible low income households receives federal housing assistance.
The consequences of America’s affordable housing crisis are spilling over into many other areas like the education, health care, civil rights, anti-hunger, homelessness, and anti-poverty sectors. By combining voices and expertise, leading organizations from these sectors seek to build a broad national movement that promotes federal policies that protect and expand affordable housing.
The long-term goals of the campaign are to promote federal policies that:
The campaign will also act to defend against funding cuts and harmful policy changes in existing low income housing programs.
Opportunity Starts at Home is also working to strengthen the capacities of multi-sector state coalitions that share the campaign’s goals. The campaign has already issued capacity-building grants to partners in seven states: California, Idaho, Maine, New Jersey, Ohio, Oregon, and Utah.
“The time to act is now,” said Diane Yentel, NLIHC president and CEO. “The housing affordability problem has reached historic heights. Federal housing assistance is chronically underfunded and faces increasing threats. It’s time for those who believe that everyone in America deserves a safe and affordable home to join in a movement that will ensure fundamental opportunities for people most in need.”
“UnidosUS is dedicated to improving opportunities for Latinos and we’re especially proud of our work over the past 50 years to empower Latinos to contribute and to share in the nation’s economic opportunities,” said Eric Rodriguez, UnidosUS vice president for policy and advocacy. “A good home is the foundation for many of those opportunities: a better education for our children, enhanced employment opportunities, and a safe and stable place for families to live. We joined Opportunity Starts at Home because too many hardworking families struggle to keep a roof over their heads and it will take all sectors of society to make progress and ensure that more Americans, including Latinos, have a place to call home.”
“The United States cannot say we cherish our children when millions of extremely poor children each year suffer through homelessness or are denied access to safe and affordable housing,” said Richard Hooks Wayman, national executive director of the Children’s Defense Fund. “Research shows that half of our intelligence potential is developed by age four. Positive child development is linked to a sense of safety, predictability, and routines. We must do our part to ensure that children have housing stability during a critical stage of development. We must do our part to ensure that housing in this nation is affordable and accessible. And we must do our part to ensure that investments in affordable housing production that keep children safe and secure is continued.”
“NAMI is proud to be a part of this multi-sector housing campaign because access to decent, safe and affordable housing is a critical need for people living with a mental illness,” said Andrew Sperling, director of legislative and policy advocacy at the National Alliance on Mental Illness. “It is simply not possible to achieve recovery and a full life in the community without stable housing. Given the current threats to rental assistance programs it is critical that NAMI joins with our partners across so many diverse sectors to fight for policies and future investments in affordable rental housing programs.”
“NEA is committed to the three million members and the 50 million students we serve and are pleased to support programs, campaigns and initiatives that are in support of students, educators and families,” said Lily Eskelsen Garcia, president of the National Education Association. “We understand and know firsthand the impacts affordable and stable housing have on student success. We also know that given the wages and income of some of our members, it impacts where they work as well as their own families.”
“The NAACP is proud to join this multi-sector housing campaign as it aligns with our goal of economic equality in housing,” said Derrick Johnson, president and CEO of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). “The research is increasingly clear that housing affects all aspects of a quality life; therefore, federal housing policy is very important for the people we serve. We find that threats to federal housing assistance are unprecedented and this campaign will indeed shed a brighter light on the needs of all people.”
“Housing affordability is one of the greatest challenges facing our nation. It limits economic mobility, reinforces racial inequities, reduces health and education outcomes, and is a primary driver of homelessness in the United States,” said Nan Roman, president and CEO of the National Alliance to End Homelessness. “The Opportunity Starts at Home campaign brings together an unprecedented multi-sector coalition, focused on increasing critically needed federal investments in affordable housing. We are honored to be part of this important effort.”
“No one should be without a safe and stable home, which is why the Opportunity Starts at Homecampaign is so critical, especially now,” said Ali Solis, president and CEO of Make Room Inc. “By partnering with organizations from the healthcare, housing and education sectors who share our mission, Make Room hopes to accelerate our goal of creating a country where everyone has a home that they can afford. We are honored to be part of this important campaign.”
“Too often, the issues of housing, health, education and income security are considered in silos, separate from one another,” said Doug Rice, senior policy analyst for the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. “But a home is much more than just four walls and a roof; it’s the pathway to a healthier, more prosperous, and more secure life, and something that far too many Americans cannot attain. We are excited to join forces with leaders in so many fields to advance effective solutions to help our nation’s most vulnerable.”
“A stable, affordable home is a prescription for good health,” said Dr. Megan Sandel, principal investigator with Children’s HealthWatch. “Children’s HealthWatch is excited to join our colleagues on the Opportunity Starts at Home campaign to identify solutions that provide access to safe, decent, affordable housing in neighborhoods where everyone has equitable opportunities to thrive.”
Learn more about the Opportunity Starts at Home campaign at: www.OpportunityHome.org
Opportunity Starts at Home is a new national multi-sector campaign to generate widespread support for federal policies that protect and expand affordable housing.
Established in 1974 by Cushing N. Dolbeare, the National Low Income Housing Coalition is dedicated solely to achieving socially just public policy that assures people with the lowest income in the United States have affordable and decent homes.
Courtesy of Opportunity Starts at Home, NLIHC
NLIHC and a group of other leading national organizations seeks a campaign director to lead the building and implementation of a new, long-term multi-sector campaign that will address the housing needs of the nation’s most vulnerable households.
Background: After a year-long planning process and with the input from education, health, children’s, anti-poverty, faith-based, and civil rights organizations, the National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC), the National Alliance to End Homelessness, the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, Make Room, and Children’s Health Watch have initiated a dynamic, long-term, multisector Campaign to meet the housing needs of the lowest-income people.
This is a critical moment in federal housing policy. Support for addressing rental affordability has gained momentum over the past several years. Potentially powerful new constituencies -- in the health care, education, veterans, aging, child welfare, child poverty, faith, and other communities -- are recognizing the impact the inability to afford decent housing has on the wellbeing of the people they serve. At the same time, there are unprecedented threats to federal housing assistance.
In the face of these opportunities and challenges, multi-sector advocates have come together to launch a long-term Campaign to address the entrenched shortage of housing affordable for the lowest income people. Together, strengthened and expanded coalitions nationally and in priority states will pursue a coordinated strategy to educate policymakers, the media, and the public about the problem and its practical solutions and the impact the solutions will have on the quality of life not only of low-income people, but of the country more broadly.
The Campaign will be a long-term, multi-faceted effort to create a new national multisector coalition that works closely with strengthened state-based organizations to impact federal policy. It will deploy policy analysis and development, communications, and informing to impact opinion leaders and policymakers. It will be staffed and operated out of NLIHC. The Campaign’s steering committee will represent education, civil rights, anti-poverty, children’s issues, faith based, disability, seniors, veterans, city/state government associations and veterans, and resident leaders, among others. The goals of the Campaign will be to:
1. Fill the gap between rents and incomes for the most vulnerable households through a variety of rental assistance strategies that include rental subsidies to landlords and tax credits.
2. Prevent destabilizing housing crises through the creation of flexible short-term tools for low-income homeowners and renters for whom short-term crises like the loss of a job or a health emergency can jeopardize housing stability.
3. Create more housing affordable to the lowest income people through deeply income-targeted production programs such as the national Housing Trust Fund.
4. Defend against funding cuts and harmful policy changes in existing low-income housing programs.
Job Description: The Campaign director will have a leadership role in building a long-term national, multi-sector Campaign to meet the rental housing needs of the nation’s most vulnerable households. The director will work closely with the Campaign’s five principal partners and Steering Committee members to create a robust national movement around the Campaign’s goals and plan. With the principals and the Steering committee, the director will create a national Campaign structure, reach out to potential partners, develop and implement communications strategies, coordinate state grantee partners, undertake national policy informing efforts, coordinate events, and act as a principal spokesperson. In addition, the director will administer the Campaign, supervise Campaign staff, coordinate the work of the principal partners, and lead fundraising efforts (with strong support of the principal partners). The Campaign director will be a national voice for affordable housing for the most vulnerable people and a leader capable of developing and sustaining a national movement.
Responsibilities: The Campaign director will provide day-to-day direction and oversight of the Campaign, including the following responsibilities.
· Coordinate and oversee the work of the Campaign staff;
· Help to build and maintain a cooperative, productive coalition structure, including close coordination with the Campaign’s partners, the Steering Committee, and a larger network of cooperating organizations;
· Refine and carry out the Campaign plan in coordination with the Campaign’s partners;
· Develop creative and effective communications and policy Campaign plans and take oversight responsibility for implementing those plans;
· Ensure the effective integration of a state-based Campaign infrastructure into national efforts;
· Ensure effective partner sub-grants management: ensure sub-grantees are carrying out the terms of their grants and are effectively and appropriately using the grants provided to achieve intended deliverables and outcomes;
· Assist in, and provide strategic guidance for, ongoing fundraising efforts (including the development of proposals) that enable the Campaign to grow;
· Provide periodic reports to the Campaign’s partners, Steering Committee members, and relevant others about the Campaign’s progress, including comprehensive donor reports;
· Engage in public speaking in support of the Campaign and represent the Campaign with the media, as needed;
· Manage the Campaign’s budget and expenditures; and
· Other duties as assigned.
· A bachelor’s degree in a pertinent field, advanced degree preferred;
· A minimum of five years previous experience leading, or playing a critical role in, one or more campaigns;
· Proven experience building or leading a large, diverse coalition of cooperating organizations;
· Significant experience in building partnerships between organizations with different substantive priorities;
· Substantial experience developing and implementing integrated strategies involving coalition-building, grassroots infrastructure deployment, creative communications, and political mobilization;
· A demonstrated capacity as a strategic thinker as well as a creative formulator of ongoing tactics pursuant to an overall strategy;
· An effective communicator, both orally and in writing;
· Experience in leading, or significantly assisting in, philanthropic fundraising;
· Previous experience harmonizing substantive ideals with the practical pursuit of achievable, incremental opportunities; and
· An ability to work in a diverse, high-speed environment.
Compensation and Benefits: An equal opportunity, affirmative action employer, NLIHC offers a competitive salary and benefits package. This is a full-time position located in Washington, DC. It is a contract position with the possibility of extension.
Status: Full-time (exempt) contract position
Reports to: President and CEO of NLIHC
Job Application Process: Candidates for the Campaign director position should send a cover letter, resume, and two writing samples to: Paul Kealey, Chief Operating Officer, NLIHC, 1000 Vermont Avenue, N.W., Suite 500, Washington, D.C. 20005 at firstname.lastname@example.org. The cover letter should describe the candidate’s interest in, and relevant experiences for, the position, and it should include salary requirements and the names and contact information for at least three people serving as candidate references. (NLIHC will not contact references before consulting with the candidate.)
NLIHC released today an analysis,“The Need for Emergency Rental Assistance During the COVID-19 and Economic Crisis,” that shows Congress must invest up to $100 billion to keep the lowest-income households stably housed over the next year during and in the immediate wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Now more than ever, it is clear that housing is health care. Those experiencing homelessness in America are at extreme risk during the pandemic. Many are seniors, have disabilities and/or underlying medical conditions, live in crowded shelters or unsanitary conditions, and lack the ability to quarantine, isolate, and recover. The lowest-income, severely housing cost-burdened renters – many of whom also are seniors and/or people with disabilities/health conditions and people in the low-wage workforce - are at high risk of COVID-19 complications as well as the threat of eviction and homelessness due to loss of income. The spread of COVID-19 among these populations threatens their health and safety - and that of us all.
The resources and provisions in the recently passed “CARES Act” were an important first step in addressing some of the urgent needs of people experiencing homelessness and those on the brink of being homeless. But much more is needed, including emergency rental assistance for the lowest-income renter households who are one missed rent payment from eviction and homelessness.
NLIHC’s analysis shows that nearly 10 million extremely low- and very low-income renters were severely housing cost-burdened – spending more than half of their limited incomes on their housing - before the start of the COVID-19 outbreak and the economic havoc it wrought. Extrapolating from the country’s last recession, we estimate this number will increase by at least 1.5 million. Before the pandemic, only one in four U.S. families that qualify for federal housing assistance received it due to a lack of funding, and many of these families get their incomes from low-wage jobs in retail and services that are now being cut.
While the expanded unemployment insurance compensation recently passed in the CARES Act will be vital for many renters losing their jobs, NLIHC’s analysis shows that, on its own, such insurance will be insufficient to keep the lowest-income families stably housed during the crisis and ongoing economic downturn; emergency rental assistance for these households is needed. NLIHC’s analysis estimates the cost to provide such assistance to all extremely and very low-income severely housing-cost-burdened renter households would be $76.1 billion over the next twelve months. Providing rental assistance to all extremely and very low-income housing-cost-burdened renter households (those spending more than 30% of their incomes on housing) would cost approximately $99.5 billion.
Read “The Need for Emergency Rental Assistance During the COVID-19 and Economic Crisis” at:https://tinyurl.com/vqyr29u
JOIN NLIHC TODAY!
The National Low Income Housing Coalition is dedicated solely to achieving socially just public policy that ensures people with the lowest incomes in the United States have affordable and decent homes.
National Low Income Housing Coalition
1000 Vermont Avenue, NW, Suite 500, Washington DC 20005
Despite claims from HUD Secretary Ben Carson and the Trump administration, current law, regulation, and practice already ensures that ineligible immigrants do not receive housing assistance. By HUD’s own admission, its “mixed-status” immigrant proposal would provide no benefit to families on housing waiting lists and could lead to the eviction of 55,000 American children and their families.
NLIHC, the National Housing Law Project (NHLP), and other national leaders urge you and those in your network to join us in opposition to this cruel proposal. Host a comment party on the June 26 Day of Action to Keep Families Together to engage your network and allow people with limited access to the internet an opportunity to make their voices heard!
Get Started Today!
To help you get started, NLIHC and NHLP created a Comment Party Planning Toolkit with tips and resources to plan a successful comment party.
Other materials – including a new Myth vs. Fact factsheet, a Spanish language commenting portal and fact sheet, a social media toolkit, and more – are available at our campaign website – www.Keep-Families-Together.org.
The National Low Income Housing Coalition is dedicated solely to achieving socially just public policy that assures people with the lowest incomes in the United States have affordable and decent homes.
Courtesy of NLIHC
By Chris Bergenheim - January 3, 2018 10:49 am
PROVIDENCE – Sen. Jack F. Reed announced $5.8 million for Rhode Island homeless assistance programs on Wednesday.
The funds come from Continuum of Care grants, administered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and will be used to support 38 homeless assistance projects around the state.
“This federal funding will help fund rapid rehousing and permanent housing for homeless persons and families in need. Helping people who are experiencing homelessness, or on the brink of homelessness, get access to shelter, care and supportive services can save lives and save taxpayer dollars. Whether it’s helping a homeless veteran who is struggling with PTSD or a family that is facing an eviction and at risk of becoming homeless, these grants help stabilize vulnerable individuals and families. We are committed to preventing and ending homelessness throughout the state, and these federal funds are vital to keeping that commitment,” said Reed in a statement.
To view the complete article, visit Providence Business News
Courtesy of Providence Business News
The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) announced its decision to protect funding for the national Housing Trust Fund (HTF) in 2018!
FHFA’s decision is an important step forward, but far more resources are needed. Join NLIHC and nearly 1,300 organizations from across the country by signing onto a national letter urging Congress to expand the HTF to reach more people in need of affordable, accessible homes.
Funding for the HTF was at risk due to the recently enacted tax bill, which caused a devaluation of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac’s (the enterprises’) tax deferred assets and forced the enterprises to need a draw from the Treasury Department. Under federal law, the FHFA has the broad authority to suspend contributions to the HTF if it would have a negative impact on the financial stability of the enterprises. In January, NLIHC sent a letter to FHFA making the case that the financial stability of the enterprises were not at issue under these unique circumstances and that contributions to the HTF should be continued.
FHFA’s decision to protect the HTF will allow states and communities to continue to use this critical resource in the coming year to help address the severe shortage of affordable rental homes for the lowest income seniors, people with disabilities, families with children, and people at risk of and experiencing homelessness.
To date, nearly $400 million has been allocated to the states through the HTF to help them address the shortage of 7.4 million rental homes affordable and available to families with extremely low incomes. NLIHC research finds that for every 100 of the lowest income people, there are just 35 affordable homes available to them. As a result, 71% of these households pay more than half of their limited incomes on rent, forcing them to make impossible trade-offs between paying their rent and buying groceries, visiting their doctor, saving for a rainy day, or investing in their children’s education.
See NLIHC’s press statement commending FHFA for its decision at: http://bit.ly/2GcIJNE
NLIHC applauds FHFA for protecting the HTF and will continue to engage stakeholders, advocates, and Congress to expand this vital program to help it reach more people in need of affordable homes.
You can support this effort by signing onto the national letter — signed by nearly 1,300 organizations — urging Congress to expand the HTF to at least $3.5 billion annually through housing finance reform legislation.
The National Low Income Housing Coalition is dedicated solely to achieving socially just public policy that assures people with the lowest incomes in the United States have affordable and decent homes.
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