COVID-19

How is the community development world responding to the COVID-19 crisis? What are the most pressing policy issues that organizations should be paying attention to? How are groups across the U.S. coordinating? Shelterforce will be delving into these issues and lots more.

We welcome reader stories about the challenges and the moments of hope and collaboration that you’re seeing on the ground, and questions you want answered. Please let us know: what kinds of information would be useful for you to hear? Email us at info@shelterforce.org.

 

A group of people stand three feet apart, mouths open as if shouting, outside a building that looks like a court. In the foreground a young white man in sunglasses with political buttons on his jacket holds a sign reading "Shut down housing court until coronavirus is past." In the center, a Black woman with a neon yellow T-shirt and black jacket holds a sign reading "Defend your home versus exposure to the virus? No one should have to choose."

Massachusetts Affordable Housing Providers Lead With Voluntary Eviction Moratorium—But There’s More to Do

Boston didn't have the power to suspend evictions itself, so while advocates pushed the courts and the state legislature, affordable housing providers agreed to a voluntary eviction moratorium and the city encouraged other landlords to join.

The Case for Building Tiny House Villages During the Pandemic

Tiny house villages cost less than extended hotel stays, can remain in place for years, and can help flatten the curve of disease transmission.

Tobacco Causes Cancer. Can it Also Build Housing?

“Sin taxes” usually fund health and education programs. Will Colorado add housing to that list? And should they?

A Bolder Future for Housing Justice: ‘These Times Call for Radical Actions’

Housing advocates working at the local, state, and national levels discuss new research and policy recommendations for advancing housing justice.
Artists_COVID sign

A Letter from A Starving Artist

To my fellow artists? Just please, PLEASE, stick around on the planet. I know. It’s getting tougher. For me too. You’re not alone.

Pollution, Place, and the Unnecessary Tragedy of Premature Death: Lessons for COVID-19

In Louisville, low-income and Black populations living in neighborhoods dealing with decades of industrial pollution are now suffering the worst public health outcomes of COVID-19.
A large group of cheering people wearing yellow T-shirts hold a sign that reads "Homes Guarantee". In the background, a large sign reads "People before profits, politics, polluters."

Housing Justice Organizers Don’t Want to Return to ‘Normal’

As they organize for immediate relief for those whose housing was affected by the pandemic, tenant leaders are also building power to demand long-term changes.

Lessons from the Last Housing Crisis: How to Get Control of Properties

How to keep affordable apartments and single-family homes out of the hands of institutional investors if the coronavirus pandemic leads to a giant wave of evictions and foreclosures.

Housing Policy Must Change in Wake of COVID-19

COVID-19 will hurt the low-income and housing insecure the most. We must act now to protect them—and ensure safe housing for all going forward. Here's how.

Resilience in the Face of a Pandemic: Green Affordable Housing Matters More Than Ever

COVID-19 is quickly changing how we think about the places we live, and about how we will design the new normal. Green building must be part of that vision.

Massachusetts Showed States How to Create an Eviction Ban. Now It’s Backpedaling

The Massachusetts eviction moratorium—one of the strongest in the nation—expired, just in time for winter. How did this happen?

Health Care Institutions Must Acknowledge Their Role in Neighborhood Change

If those in health care seek to develop new ways to help patients stay in their homes, they must also find ways to temper how they affect communities in which they reside.
Rep. Ilhan Omar, who stands at a podium in front of an American flag, has proposed legislation that would cancel rents and individual mortgage payments nationwide to deal with the COVID-19 crisis.

Ilhan Omar Proposes Bill to Cancel Rent, Mortgage Payments During Pandemic

A bill announced today by Rep. Ilhan Omar would release tenants and homeowners from housing payments until the national emergency is lifted, and would make up the losses to landlords and lenders through a federal fund.

How Nonprofits Are Adapting to Serve Immigrants During COVID

COVID-19 quickly exacerbated instability in housing, health care, and income for immigrant communities. How have CDCs stepped up to help?

How CDCs Are Fighting Back Against Anti-Asian Harassment

Advocates for the Asian-American community say the COVID-19 crisis has led to the most widespread discrimination against them since the aftermath of the Sept. 11 attacks.

Evicted—Navigating the Eviction Process and Its Lasting Impact

Despite a national eviction moratorium, millions of renters will soon navigate a costly and inefficient system. We take a closer look at one person’s experience after her landlord decided to evict.

What an Effective Eviction Moratorium Must Include

An eviction moratorium must hit all five phases of eviction to protect public health. Here's what's needed for an eviction halt policy to do its job.

Flexibility Key to Vermont Nonprofit’s COVID-19 Homeless Housing Pivot

By mid-March, the state of Vermont and the Champlain Housing Trust were able to offer quarantine space for Burlington’s homeless population.

COVID Through the Eyes of a South Asian Immigrant Teen

Why the federal government must allocate funds toward mental health counseling for youth and increase access to resources for immigrant families.

Is the Pandemic Improving Affordable Housing Asset Management?

Resident services has long been the first to be cut in hard times—but for some housing providers that may be changing.