Blog

The Shelterforce blog (formerly known as Rooflines) is a forum for voices in the community development, affordable housing, community organizing, neighborhood revitalization, and related fields to challenge each other and other stakeholders; share ideas, successes, and failures; and pose questions to one another. Learn how you or your organization can submit a post.

Imagine if Banks Had a Rating Showing Compliance with Consumer Law?

When consumers shop for new cars or other major products, they often like to consult with Consumer Reports or...

McCain’s Service Problems

I hope the moderators press McCain on his campaign’s assault on community organizing and how it jibes with the convention’s theme of “service.”

“Women- and Minority-Owned Businesses” Is a Meaningless Category

How many times have you seen the phrase “women- and minority-owned businesses” or seen an organization list a single...

You’re Gonna Change the Economy? How, Exactly?

If people were surprised at how skeptical voters in the recent West Virginia Democratic primary were of Barack Obama’s casting himself as the candidate...

Losing CDBG Funds

The House Appropriations Committee this week introduced HR 1 that funds all federal programs in the current fiscal year. Included in this bill is...

Nine Rules of Engagement for Recruiting and Retaining Community Volunteers

In community development's formative years, it would have been unthinkable for a nonprofit housing organization not to have a grassroots...

Community-Labor: A Coalition Whose Time Has Come

Ed Gorman of the NCRC board introduced Mark Ayers, president of the building trades department of the AFL-CIO, as “the man who is opening...
Painted gentrification sign on wall

Who Gets to Live Where, and Why? The Answer May Be Settled By Our...

Why housing messaging is backfiring and recommendations on how to change course.

Mel Watt, Get to Work!

Monday marked a big victory for housing advocates as Rep. Mel Watt was sworn in to lead the Federal Housing Finance Agency. He replaces...

How Are We Responsible for Baltimore?

Over the last few years, slowly but surely, the reality of the lived experience of black American women has continued to come to light....

New Data on True Cost of Voucher Administration

HUD is trying to get better data on the true cost of administering the Housing Choice Voucher program, but...

Chicago Factory Occupation Victory Is Only The Beginning

In the past few days we’ve seen news of 3,500 jobs to be lost by the closing of U.S. Steel facilities in Illinois, Michigan...

Could 2012 Be the Best Year for Massachusetts CDCs in Decades?

Starting in the mid 1970s, Mel King and other visionary leaders of the community development movement worked systematically to build a support infrastructure for...

Can’t Look Past the Rescue Short Fall

As Look Past the Bailout Blather notes, there are aspects of American Housing Rescue and Foreclosure Prevention Act of 2008 that are welcomed....
Football players kneel during national anthem.

#ThisIsNotUs. Except, It Is.

We are constantly faced with the decision of whether to #TakeAKnee in our work, and whether we meet this challenge or not either reinforces our racialized landscape or disrupts it. What is clear is that we cannot sit on the sidelines with a universalist perspective, claiming to do good work.

Social Enterprise Movement Faces Growth and New Challenges

In September, I attended the Social Enterprise Alliance (SEA) annual conference in Denver, Colorado. At the closing session, Tamra Ryan voiced a key conference...

Who’s Going to Report the News?

Rooflines has been watching a disturbing decline in the newspaper industry as print media is falling victim to fewer subscribers, falling numbers in advertising,...

Cut the Red Tape – Local Hire Needed

Last month, USDOT Secretary Anthony Foxx announced a new, year long model program to test innovative local hire policies....

Will the Occupy Wall Street Crackdowns Energize or Deflate the Movement?

Last week we asked you how the widespread crackdowns on the Occupy Wall Street protests would affect the movement. More...