Members Open the Door to Building the Fair Housing Movement

By Tori Bourret, NLIHC housing advocacy organizer

Today is the last Friday of Membership Month! We want to thank all our members who are growing the movement to expand affordable homes across the country. Some of our members are doing this by bringing people together to discuss fair housing issues and to figure out ways to solve these challenges. NLIHC has helped some of our members in this work by sharing our knowledge of fair housing policies and ways to deal with obstructions to fair housing brought by the current administration.

This past April, I attended “Building the Next Generation of Diverse Arkansas Communities”. A conference hosted by NLIHC member organization the Arkansas Fair Housing Commission. I spoke as a panelist on the status of fair housing in Arkansas and the United States. I discussed why source of income should be protected under the Fair Housing Act, and how the administration is weakening the Fair Housing Act and delaying implementation of the affirmatively furthering fair housing rule.

It was great to be able to contribute to the conference by offering some additional resources on the fair housing discussion and connecting local issues to federal legislation. It was impactful to see how groups are coming together to learn from each other and inspire each other to keep pushing for equality for all.

Tori in AR

The opening plenary on the last day of the “Building the Next Generation of Diverse Arkansas Communities” Conference. Panelists include: Mayra Joachin, National Immigration Law Center; Sara Oliver, Arkansas Housing Trust Fund; Frederick Love, Director of Community Services Pulaski County; and Victoria Bourret, National Low Income Housing Coalition.

NLIHC staff would not have the opportunity to be in the field and have important discussions with local advocates if not for the support and contributions of our members. Consider joining today!

 


This blog is part of a series of blogs highlighting NLIHC member-driven advocacy successes for Membership Month. Find out more about Membership Month at: https://bit.ly/2f16bCh 

Members Open the Door to a Growing Movement

By Tori Bourret, NLIHC housing advocacy organizer

We are in the last week of NLIHC’s Membership Month. This week we are highlighting the ways our members open the door to a growing movement. Our members and partners involve NLIHC in policy events throughout the country. For NLIHC staff this is an opportunity to learn more about housing challenges in local communities. For local advocates, NLIHC provides ways to address affordable housing shortages through federal policy and advocacy work. Recently, I was invited by organization member, Oklahoma Coalition for Affordable Housing (OCAH) to speak at its 2018 Affordable Housing Conference about housing affordability challenges and solutions.

Andrea Frymire, secretary on the Board of Directors for the OCAH, shared with me that she appreciates the outreach and education NLIHC offers its members.

“NLIHC membership provides critical data and research to help further the mission of the Oklahoma Coalition for Affordable Housing as we strive to provide housing solutions for low to moderate income Oklahomans.  We were honored to have Victoria Bourret participate in our 2018 Affordable Housing Conference:Plan.Build.House.  Tori provided our 350+ attendees with up-to-the-minute information on national issues during a federal legislative panel and provided 20 workshop session attendees with ways to better advocate for affordable housing.”

Funding affordable homes is a challenge in Oklahoma but groups like the OCAH are bringing people together to convince policymakers that solving the affordable housing crisis helps an entire community. I was able to share with their members ways to talk about funding affordable homes that can appeal to a wide audience. It was meaningful to be able to dialogue with advocates on the ground about effective advocacy strategies to best meet the needs of the lowest income households in Oklahoma.

Tori in OK

Members of the Federal Legislative Update Panel at the 2018 Affordable Housing Conference from left to right: Moderator Lance Windel, LW Development; Garth Rieman, National Council of State Housing Agencies; Tori Bourret, National Low Income Housing Coalition; & Josh Yurek, Midwest Housing Equity Group

My presentation at the 2018 Affordable Housing Conference: Plan.Build.House was made possible through the contributions of our members. The information that I presented was generated with member support and shared through a member network. Please consider joining this network!


This blog is part of a series of blogs highlighting NLIHC member-driven advocacy successes for Membership Month. Find out more about Membership Month at: https://bit.ly/2f16bCh 

Members Open the Door to Data Resources and Tools

By Justin Godard, NLIHC housing advocacy organizer

September is NLIHC Membership Month, and this week we’re highlighting the ways our members support the development of invaluable data and tools useful to those fighting for more affordable housing. Without accurate data, making the case for investing in low income housing resources would be impossible. NLIHC serves this need by continually researching, developing, and distributing data and tools which accurately describe housing needs. One such tool is the National Housing Preservation Database (NHPD).

Created and maintained in partnership with the Public and Affordable Housing Research Corporation (PAHRC), the NHPD is an address-level inventory of all federally assisted rental housing in the United States. The benefit of such a tool is that it allows advocates to get a comprehensive understanding of the affordable housing stock in a community. It also allows users interested in perserving local affordable housing to get a clear understanding of which properties might be at risk of loss from the affordable housing stock.

Resources such as the NHPD are only possible through the support of our NLIHC Members! Join today!

NHPD Property Mapping Tool

NHPD Property Mapping Tool

The NHPD is utilized by a wide range of stakeholders, including practitioners, public officials, advocates, and researchers. It has been used for developing voter-engagement tools for assisted housing tenants,  identifying expiring Section 8 properties where tenants need to be organized to advocate for preserving their affordability, providing data for peer-reviewed journal articles about preservation, and many other purposes. The NHPD is also an important tool for NLIHC’s own research efforts.

Data and resources such as the NHPD are made possible through the contributions of our members. Consider supporting this work and join us!

Note: Nonprofits can sign up to use the NHPD for free; learn more at: https://preservationdatabase.org/

Organizations can also support the NHPD directly at: https://bit.ly/2NQTeh9 


This blog is part of a series of blogs highlighting NLIHC member-driven advocacy successes for Membership Month. Find out more about Membership Month at: https://bit.ly/2f16bCh 

Members Open the Doors to Tools like Housing Profiles

By Joey Lindstrom, NLIHC manager for field organizing

This week, as part of membership month, we are highlighting the research, data, and tools that are made possible through the support of NLIHC members. State and Congressional Housing Profiles are used commonly by NLIHC members and advocates throughout the country to communicate key facts and figures about affordable housing shortages in their respective communities. The tools are designed to provide a local focus for communicating with policy makers or members of the media. Legislative staffers are often grateful for the handy information; housing profiles feature graphs and charts that show the shortage of affordable homes for extremely low income households in a state, housing cost burden by income group, the annual income needed to afford a two-bedroom apartment at Fair Market Rent, and other important statistics that make the case for the expansion of affordable homes for the lowest income households.

SHP_DC

Example: 2018 DC State Housing Profile

Housing Profiles are effective tools for lobby visits with members of Congress because they use empirically driven data to show the unmet needs of the lowest income households. The data tells a story of massive disinvestment for people struggling the most. This data provides a structured argument alongside the personal experience and stories that local advocates are ready to provide.

State and Congressional District Housing Profiles would not be possible without the support of NLIHC members! Join NLIHC today by clicking here.

During NLIHC’s 2018 lobby day over 50 members braved a snowstorm and partners conducted visits with more than 120 legislative offices to discuss NLIHC’s policy priorities, such as NLIHC’s opposition to housing benefit cuts, funding the THUD budget at the highest possible level, and expanding revenue for the national Housing Trust Fund. Housing Profiles were a key part of lobby day packets that participants used to advance their policy arguments.

Tools such as our Housing Profiles are only possible through the support and contributions made by our members. Consider supporting this work and join NLIHC today!


This blog is part of a series of blogs highlighting NLIHC member-driven advocacy successes for Membership Month. Find out more about Membership Month at: https://bit.ly/2f16bCh 

Members Open the Door to Cross Sector Organizing Like Opportunity Starts at Home

By Tori Bourret, NLIHC housing advocacy organizer and Mike Koprowski, Opportunity Starts at Home national campaign director

This week, as part of membership month, we’re highlighting collaborative efforts that will broaden the circle of organizations advocating for affordable homes for all. A key example is the Opportunity Starts at Home campaign. Together with the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, Children’s HealthWatch, Make Room, and the National Alliance to End Homelessness, NLIHC launched the Opportunity Starts at Home campaign this past winter to increase the political will to provide resources for affordable housing by bringing non-traditional voices to housing advocacy.

OSH_Logo_small_CMYK

The campaign has an active steering committee that represents a wide range of national organizations that support the campaign’s goal and works together to address the affordable housing crisis. Representatives from advocacy sectors like education, healthcare, civil rights, anti-poverty, anti-hunger, faith-based and more are now convening to discuss how everyone can work together to bring about housing justice. The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) is part of the steering committee and a proud member of NLIHC.

“Accessing decent, safe and affordable rental housing is an enormous challenge for adults living with mental illness. NLIHC plays a critical role in convening diverse interests and achieving alignment on critical federal policies such as ensuring that HUD’s programs effectively target extremely low-income individuals and households. In addition, NLIHC has been successful in leading efforts to oppose cuts to important HUD programs such as Section 8, McKinney-Vento and Section 811.” -Andrew Sperling, NAMI’s Director of Legislative and Policy Advocacy and member of the Opportunity Starts at Home steering committee.

NLIHC is pleased to have members like NAMI recognize that affordable homes are inextricably linked to their own priorities and concerns. Meeting the needs of the lowest income households is effective when we work together to increase federal investments in proven solutions.

Opportunity Starts at Home is a team effort, with excellent leadership provided by numerous partners and supported with a substantial grant from the Funders for Housing and Opportunity. Much of the work NLIHC is able to put into this campaign, especially its development, has been informed and supported by our members.

 Founding Partners

We’re grateful for the members who help us launch exciting collaborations with new partners. Become an NLIHC member today!


This blog is part of a series of blogs highlighting NLIHC member-driven advocacy successes for Membership Month. Find out more about Membership Month at: https://bit.ly/2f16bCh