Af­ford­able hous­ing is a must

Baltimore Sun Sunday - - NEWS -

United Way of Cen­tral Mary­land has a keen in­ter­est in the fu­ture of af­ford­able hous­ing in Bal­ti­more City. (“Res­i­dents, ad­vo­cates worry Perkins Homes' re­de­vel­op­ment will re­duce af­ford­able units,” Aug. 31).

United Way fights for the ba­sic needs of cit­i­zens through­out our re­gion — and those needs in­clude the right to safe, af­ford­able hous­ing. The United Way ALICE (As­set Lim­ited, In­come Con­strained, Em­ployed) Re­port, re­leased ear­lier this year, clearly states the need: an ap­palling 55 per­cent of Bal­ti­more City res­i­dents spend more than a third of their in­come on rent, plac­ing them in a pre­car­i­ous and un­sta­ble fi­nan­cial po­si­tion. Ac­cord­ing to the re­port, the gap in rental stock avail­able for these strug­gling work­ing fam­i­lies is 30,000 units.

Re­duc­ing the al­ready low num­ber of af­ford­able hous­ing units in the city puni­tively af­fects our neigh­bors who are al­ready in a vul­ner­a­ble po­si­tion. We are fully sup­port­ive of Mayor Cather­ine Pugh’s 20/20 Cam­paign tar­get­ing af­ford­able hous­ing and home­less­ness and hope the city will hold de­vel­op­ers ac­count­able for en­sur­ing that strug­gling fam­i­lies have equal op­por­tu­nity to a safe and af­ford­able place to call home.

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