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Affordable Housing Civil Rights Social Issues Government

President Trump On Low Income Housing in Suburbs

President Obama and his Administration established the Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing Rule (AFFHR). The goal is to affirmatively further the purposes and policies of the Fair Housing Act, which is Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968.

President Trump and his Administration considers the AFFHR to be flawed and suspended it in 2018 and in 2020 proposed a replacement called the Preserving Community and Neighborhood Choice.

On July 29, 2020 President Trump tweeted “I am happy to inform all of the people living their Suburban Lifestyle Dream that you will no longer be bothered or financially hurt by having low income housing built in your neighborhood……Your housing prices will go up based on the market, and crime will go down. I have rescinded the Obama-Biden AFFH Rule. Enjoy!”

From my perspective, these tweets are problematic in that they fail to focus on the real problem. The real problem is that low income housing is often a dead end predicament because income for the people stay far too low over time, even generations. Low income housing should be transition housing to higher incomes. Higher incomes would dramatically affect crime rates so their is a cause and effect there: low income higher crime; higher income lower crime. Of course not all low income people engage in crime so this all is about probability.

One major problem is that the government poverty threshold is minimal at best and does not reflect a desired level of quality life for most.

The poverty threshold is largely a getting by amount. Those at lower levels above the threshold may not be able to for example sufficiently invest in their children’s future like those further up the chain. So then an inequality or disparity begins to emerge not only with respect to poverty but also with respect to capacity above poverty.

Also, statistics show that there is a large gap between blacks and white such that blacks relative to whites are not doing very well proportionately.

Focused efforts to discover and resolve the real causes and short-term/long-term effect of poverty disparity would implement solution elements available to all racial groups and therefore reduce the poverty rate for all as the goal is improved quality of life for all regardless of race and gender, etc.

In any case, low income housing should not be seen as a community asset and strategically placed with accompanying people development and socio-economic growth not forgotten about whether they are separate from or integrated into suburbs with appropriate measures of protection and control. The people should not be viewed a less-than-citizens of the community.

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