June 19, 2012
We recently highlighted a report by the National Low Income Housing Coalition: Affordable Housing Dilemma: The Preservation vs. Mobility Debate.
The report outlines the need for a balanced approach to housing choice – preserving and improving housing in distressed areas, and investing in new housing in stronger neighborhoods.
United States Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Shaun Donovan weighed in on the debate at a recent Mobility Conference co-sponsored by the Poverty and Race Research Action Council and the Urban Institute:
..to make sure that every neighborhood, no matter where it starts, is moving on the path to greater opportunity. That is an important point that is too often lost. While we can have disagreements about means to an end, the end is really to get to integrated, vital neighborhoods of opportunity. It could be a neighborhood today that has opportunity but is closed to low income families and families of color; it is also the reverse, taking neighborhoods that have been cut off from opportunity and that have concentrated poverty that we are moving on the path of becoming a neighborhood of greater opportunity.
We agree with Secretary Donovan - every neighborhood should be open to people at every income level.