Grandma always said, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” Yet many people and organizations begin with the most complicated social challenges, focusing attention on the symptoms rather than the holistic approach that is prevention. Housing is that preventative solution, but the cost of Fair Market Rent (FMR) is out of reach for far too many of our neighbors. Look at the infographic below:
If you need a one bedroom apartment in Kane County, you will need to work 68 hours per week at the state’s $11/hour minimum wage. Considering that over 30% of residents in Kane rent their residence, we are putting a massive strain on individuals and families with few solutions available.
You may think to yourself, what about crime? If we fix crime, we will have safe and welcoming neighborhoods. The research shows clearly that what we think of as criminal behavior largely stems from impoverishment – which is inextricably linked to stable housing. This is why our approach is Housing First. When people have access to housing that is affordable, they have stability to enroll in schools, find better employment, fix their credit, locate better transportation and slowly work their way out of poverty. Affordable housing is humane.
Over the next few weeks, we will host a number of forums, conversations and posts about the power of housing and its impact on every aspect of our lives. For now, we invite you to join us in educating Kane County at large about the need for more affordable housing.
Kane County United