Housing, housing, housing

Can you imagine not having a place to sleep at night and feel safe? Can you imagine finding yourself at 74 years old, after having a full life and after a variety of missteps, you find yourself living on the street? Can you imagine having a job that doesn’t pay enough for you to afford rent in your city or that there is not enough left to eat once you pay the rent? Can you imagine being sexually abused in your house as a young adult, and the only way you will survive is to leave, but then you have to live on the streets?

This past week a thorough report utilized the actual cost of living in NY. They found that 50% of NYers in working-age households do not have incomes that cover basic needs. Basic needs differ by family, including housing, child care, food, transportation, healthcare, miscellaneous, and taxes. Other countries do not have these problems. The difference is the Government, aka socialism, pays for these. However, the reality is if you add up all the tax benefits, the cost of emergency room healthcare, homeless shelters, and a slew of other things that attempt to be a quasi-safety net for too many NYers, it would probably cost more than what other countries spend to keep roofs over peoples heads and food on the table.

There is a long list of people wanting to get an apartment in NYCHA or others looking to get into some of the middle-income developments around the city. It doesn’t take much to see that we are not providing basic needs to our fellow citizens, who are the working foundation of our city.

NYS Governor Kathy Hochul finally got her budget done. She wanted to create 800,000 new housing units in a decade, but it got shot down. She correctly said, “Housing is a human right.” It is utterly depressing that this was shot down. Nobody deserves to be a NIMBY when it comes to housing.

Imagine a future where there are no homeless, those with mental issues are adequately taken care of, ample housing depending on what you can afford, children do not have to live in shelters, and we support each other as a community. The long tail of that is an economically stable city. I can not wrap my head around any human being that would shoot down capital to make others’ lives affordable and safe.

The people who get the most significant tax deductions are the wealthy; quite frankly, it is shocking that most Americans get by. We should all ask ourselves, “Why, why, why?” And for all the people who are against housing and think these people are getting a free ride, read Poverty, By America, written by Matthew Desmond. It is an eye-opener.