Policy

The rules of the game—and the attitudes of the players—have an enormous effect on community development work at all levels. Here we look at some of the conversations about how to shift that policy for the better.

mallach book cover

Can Cities Fix Their Polarization Problem? A Review of The Divided City

How different would cities look and how different would people’s lives be if those with the power to set policy and invest resources prioritized the most vulnerable residents and the neighborhoods they live in?

Will 2009 Be the Year of No Credit for College Tuition or a Green...

As forecasters offer their new year’s predictions of a struggling economy, it is past time to be asking how a federal bailout of our...

What We Talk About When We Talk About Voting Machines

I suppose post-election time is as good a time as any to talk about voting machine flaws, particularly following a...

Strengthening the CRA

In 1995, the last time federal banking agencies revised the rules of the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA), they promised to conduct a follow-up review...

Does HUD’s “Hope” Float?

Today’s New York Times editorial titled “Show Us the Hope” slams the inadequacies of both the Bush administration’s and Congress’s attention to the plight...

N.Y. Legislators: Don’t Sleep on Foreclosure Prevention

It seems surreal, or like a nasty joke. How can Americans be so far into the foreclosure crisis and still not see any significant...
rosewood courts

The Most Important Housing Law Passed in 1968 Wasn’t the Fair Housing Act

At the Aug. 1, 1968 signing ceremony, President Johnson proclaimed “Today, we are going to put on the books of American law what I genuinely believe is the most farsighted, the most comprehensive, the most massive housing program in all American history.” He was right. 
richard rothstein

The Not-So Hidden Truths About the Segregation of America’s Housing

Our conversation with The Color of Law author Richard Rothstein on uncovering truths about our not-so distant history of federally mandated racial segregation in housing.

Halting the Oil Slick’s Spread

It was bound to happen: Oil goes up to $140-plus a barrel and the president calls for offshore drilling and opening up the Arctic...

Bus Tour Fueled by Immigration Reform

One bus, four days, seven states, 11 cities, nine Congressional offices visited and 40 people riding a bus to...

The Costs of “Moving On”

In his recent New York Times op-ed, American Enterprise Institute president Arthur C. Brooks says declining mobility is a...

NSP at Halftime

The federal Neighborhood Stabilization Program is a welcome source of funds in struggling communities, and it has had a massive effect on the nature of the response to the problem of vacant foreclosed property. As NSP3 gets underway and the NSP1 obligation period comes to a close, Shelterforce looks back at NSP so far.
Flooding in North Charleston, South Carolina

The Uncertain Flood Zone

Communities need accurate maps and more access to data to increase flood resilience—but right now FEMA's not providing that.
Row of trailer homes with mountains in the background.

Duty to Serve: A Boon for Shared Equity Homeownership

Shared equity homeownership programs just had a big win.

Public Benefits and Bank Mergers

Community organizations are generally aware that when a bank wants to acquire another bank, it must submit a merger...
The spires and statue atop an old bank building.

CRA “Reform” Under Trump Threatens Communities of Color and the 99 Percent

Banks enjoy consumer and taxpayer-funded privileges, such as deposit insurance, and not too long ago, subsidized trillion-dollar bailouts. It’s not too much to insist that they invest a fair share of those dollars back into all of our communities.

Not Just Inclusionary Spot Zoning: Conference Portrays IZ As Essential to Civil Rights, Sustainable

The 3rd biannual National Inclusionary Housing Conference, which wrapped up Friday in Washington, DC, had plenty of the expected workshops focused on details of...

Nicolas P. Retsinas

Nicolas P. Retsinas, a senior lecturer in real estate at the Harvard Business School and director emeritus of Harvard's Joint Center for Housing Studies, talks with Shelterforce about his long service in the housing field.

Tainted Loans: Fighting Toxic Mortgages in the Courts

It's not too late to treat toxic loans as the defective product they are.

Trump’s Upside-Down Plan: Tax Cuts Come at the Expense of Working Families

This past Wednesday, President Donald Trump released a one-page outline of a tax plan that he says provides tax relief for the middle class, but in reality, the plan is basically a massive tax cut for the rich. Like the American Health Care Act, which actually was also a massive tax cut for the wealthy disguised as health care reform, this plan is also a massive tax cut for people who need it the least. This time, it is merely disguised as “tax relief” and “simplification.”