Advocates have been sounding the alarms for months—issuing reports, penning press releases, warning politicians as an increasing number of Americans made jobless by the pandemic have fallen behind on their rent. Now, the warnings unheeded, the United States is facing an unprecedented homelessness crisis, one that is as predictable as it was avoidable.
I first saw signs of this coming catastrophe on May 26, as the markets in New York City roared—the Dow was up 530 points, and the S&P hit an 11-week high. But in San Diego, Rudy and Christina Rico rummaged through a blue recycling barrel set out on the street. The couple, married for 37 years, hoped to scrape together $50 worth of bottles and cans. It meant dinner.
“I never thought I’d go through trash cans for money,” Rudy told me as I walked down the drive of a friend’s house, where I was isolating. “But you got to eat.” A mockingbird in a Queen palm filled the ensuing silence. Rudy was a landscaper until the pandemic hit and he lost his job. He and Christina were now living out of their car. They’d never been homeless before. Christina thought I’d come to admonish them. “Some people get angry,” she said.
The Ricos were among the earliest ripples of a crisis that has been looming since the first days of the coronavirus pandemic. As far back as April, after lockdowns jolted the economy to a halt, news outlets began issuing warnings: “31% Can’t Pay the Rent: ‘It’s Only Going to Get Worse,’” declared one New York Times headline; “Rent Is Due Today, But Millions of Americans Won’t Be Paying,” blared NPR’s website the following month.
By August, a group of experts representing some of the leading housing rights organizations in the country—including the Eviction Lab at Princeton University, the National Low Income Housing Coalition, and the Covid-19 Eviction Defense Project—arrived at a dire conclusion. In a white paper titled “The Covid-19 Eviction Crisis,” the consortium estimated that “in the absence of robust and swift intervention, an estimated 30–40 million people in America could be at risk of eviction in the next several months
.” The authors warned that “the United States may be facing the most severe housing crisis in its history,” adding that people of color “constitute approximately 80% of people facing eviction.
In the ensuing months, tens of thousands of Americans have been evicted; according to the Eviction Lab, landlords have filed more than 162,500 eviction notices in the 27 cities it tracks. But the worst of the crisis has been averted so far by a patchwork of state moratoriums that have been supplemented, in turn, by a patchwork of federal efforts. In March, Congress passed a temporary eviction moratorium as part of the CARES Act; after that expired, in September, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) stepped in with its own temporary moratorium. Most recently, as part of the stimulus package passed in late December, Congress provided $25 billion in rental assistance to states and localities and extended the eviction moratorium to January 31. Renters breathed a sigh of relief.
That relief may be short-lived, however. The end date for the federal moratorium looms in a matter of weeks, while various state moratoriums are also slated to sunset. And the $25 billion in rent relief provided by Congress, while critical, falls far short of what advocates believe is necessary. But perhaps the most intractable problem is that a moratorium is not the same as rent forgiveness.
This means that, even if the moratoriums are extended again (and then again), tenants will at some point have to pay their landlords all of the accrued back rent. Already, nearly 12 million households owe an average of $5,850 in overdue rent and utilities, according to Moody’s Analytics. That’s $70 billion. How will people be able to repay those sums if they remain jobless? How will they be able to repay them even if they do land a job?
California, with its stratospheric housing costs, is expected to be especially hard-hit. Between 4.1 and 5.4 million residents are at risk of eviction, the white paper notes. The next closest states are New York, with 2.8 to 3.3 million; Texas, with 2.6 to 3.8 million; and Florida, with 1.9 to 2.5 million. The most conservative prediction in a report by the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia projects a 50 percent increase in evictions in 2021.
The Ricos foreshadow what will happen. They had already faced a difficult choice while they waited a month and a half for Rudy’s unemployment benefits to begin: either use the money, whenever it arrived, to catch up on their rent, which had been suspended because of the pandemic but would need to be paid at some point, or make their car payments. They chose the latter, in part because they thought they could move in with family.
“We were staying with my sister,” Rudy explained, “but she got the bad liver, and the doctor told her she had to get everybody out of the house.” So the Ricos found themselves living in their car instead, sleeping on different streets each night to avoid the cops.
At the time, the couple, both 55, said they would likely be homeless for a long while, even after Rudy returned to work. “It’ll cost $3,000 to get back into an apartment,” he said.
That was over seven months ago, weeks after the alarms had first begun to sound.Отсюда
Существующая система не рассчитана на кризисы такого плана. Огромное количество работающих людей работают на систему обслуживания прочих людей и во время кризиса они массово теряют работу. А вместе с работой - жилье. Помните - один пейчек отделяет работягу от бомжевания? Да, многие штаты и федералы ввели мораторий на выселение, но мораторий всего лишь позволил накопиться долгам по квартплате, она никуда не делась и рано или поздно каждый десятый (как минимум) американец будет выкинут на улицу, если ничего не предпринимать.
Статья большая, они там даже Льва Толстого и Хитров рынок вспоминают. И главный негодяй, кто все это начал в недавнее время - Рейган. Вот кто убил Америку на самом деле. Выстрелил в СССР, убил, а рикошетом нанес себе смертельную рану:
A short version of what came next: Reagan set to work fulfilling the long-held Republican dream of dismantling the legacy of the New Deal, ushering in the neoliberal era and a growing worship of markets. On the housing front, he slashed the budget for federal programs and shifted the resulting diminished resources away from public housing and affordable-housing construction and into vouchers for people to seek shelter on the free market. These and similar assaults on the social safety net were compounded by growing economic insecurity, born in part from stagnating wages, sharply rising rents, and the loss of well-paying jobs as deindustrialization devastated middle America.