According to Urban Land Institute, “workforce housing” is defined as housing for people making 60 to 120 percent of area median income—meant to be for teachers, first responders, nurses. It is being specifically contrasted to “standard” affordable housing. However, the connotation of “workforce housing” can be considered insulting, as the low-wage workforce (earning less than 60 percent of the area’s median incomes) does not qualify for workforce housing but is still a critical part the workforce making valuable contributions to society.
How do we define these various classes of housing? How do we work toward providing dignified housing to everyone, regardless of their income? The Housing Innovation Collaborative hosts a conversation with Shelterforce’s Miriam Axel-Lute on her perspectives.