Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Blogger Carnival: Reducing Inequality Starts in the Home

June and thus National Homeownership Month has come to a close and folks are gearing up to celebrate Independence Day. Before moving onto the 4th, though, we wanted to emphasize the importance of housing reform and market challenges by posting the great entries we received from our blog carnival. These posts celebrate National Homeownership Month and echo the main messages behind our Home for Good campaign: that we must 1) put an end to the needless foreclosures happening in some of the most vulnerable communities in the country and 2) remind our presidential candidates and other leaders to share with the nation their solutions.

This housing crisis exposed weaknesses in the housing system that have long affected low-income families and communities of color. It is estimated that 25% of Black and Hispanic borrowers in the U.S. lost homes or are at serious risk of losing their homes, compared to 12% of White borrowers. In our town hall tour, we have encountered many people who embody that statistic. They are struggling with a system that all too often is built to work against them. Through our Home for Good campaign, we aim to reduce that inequality and help keep more homeowners in their homes!

Thank you to everyone who participated, and enjoy these featured blog posts! (Originally posted on nclr.org June 29 2012)


Loss of homes by Latino homeowners signals an erosion of equality in the nation, Marisa Treviño, Founder and Publisher, Latina Lista
LatinaLista — As June, otherwise known as National Homeownership Month, draws to an end so does the American Dream for many Americans, especially Latino and black home owners. RealtyTrac reports that banks took back 54,844 properties last month, up 7 percent from April. This is a discouraging sign in an economy where Latino homeowners have already lost 60 percent of their wealth since the onset of the housing collapse in 2008.

In an economy where foreclosures are the item of the day and minorities are bearing the brunt of it, the need to adopt successful policies is critical to help both Latinos and African Americans who are about to lose their homes. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, commonly known as HUD, is responsible for creating policies and programs to assist homeowners. However, HUD’s efforts have had difficulty taking off. 

Vacant properties in Latino communities: a discouraging irony, Julianna Gonzalez-Crussi, Policy Analyst & Housing Outreach Coordinator, Latino Policy Forum, Connector 
Take a walk down a block in any predominately-Latino neighborhood and you’ll be confronted with one the United States’ greatest present-day ironies: As one household is overcrowded, its space stretched to accommodate extended family or friends who have fallen on hard times, the home next door sits vacant, its windows covered with plywood and its yard untended. 

Housing struggles in America often become pervasive problems in people’s lives, particularly in minority communities. Spotlight has covered these issues as well, most notably in last winter’s exclusive commentary series, “How Housing Matters to Families and Communities,” undertaken in partnership with the MacArthur Foundation. 

Homeowners Can't Afford Another Missed Opportunity, Janis Bowdler, NCLR, Huffington Post, Latino Voices
When the housing bubble burst more than four years ago, many banks and federal regulators argued that the impact would be limited and the damage contained to the subprime market. Famous last words.