Housing and Racial Wealth Inequality Laser Talk


January 11th, 2019

Support policies that increase access to housing and reduce the racial wealth divide

(Word version)

Engage: I am deeply concerned about wealth inequality in the United States — median wealth for white families was 10 times greater than African American family wealth and eight times greater than Hispanic family wealth.

Problem: Wealth inequality, especially along racial lines, is a huge problem and many families lack the assets needed to weather financial problems and build for the future.

Illustrate or Inform: We must reduce wealth inequality and close the racial wealth divide (include your own experience/why you care). Housing policy can help us do that. We can start by helping families avoid evictions with emergency stabilization funds to help people stay in their homes, and shift resources to support low-income renters and first-time homebuyers in ways the reduce racial wealth inequality. The Institute on Assets and Social Policy estimates that equalizing home ownership rates would reduce the white/African-American wealth divide by 31 percent.

Call to Action: In conversations about long-term housing and tax priorities, will you support emergency stabilization funds for families facing evictions? Also, will you shift tax priorities to increase support for low- and moderate-income renters via a “Renters Credit” and target homeownership policies to reduce racial wealth inequality?

We also hope you’ll address other barriers to affordable housing and racial equity including inclusive zoning, credit scores, and application fees.

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