With 2017 comes a year of big changes when it comes to government officials. Ben Carson will now be leading the Department Of Housing And Urban Development (HUD) under the Trump administration. With any cabinet change, there is always uncertainty and fear for the future because we don’t yet know what changes the appointee will make to the current laws and regulations.
Leading HUD is not a position that should be taken lightly. The position is no throwaway role, and Carson has the ability to make serious changes to affordable housing in the United States. Affordable housing is an integral part of many US citizens lives and any small change in regulations can have a massive impact on thousands. As a result, the Women’s Housing Coalition and all of us who care about affordable housing will be watching to see where he will take this department. Lack of direct experience may be a concern. Having lived and seen Baltimore’s challenges first hand could prove helpful to our local efforts.
At the moment, there are serious problems with public housing and determining who gets it. For instance, the Baltimore public housing waitlist only opened only once in the last 10 years! The demand for public housing is beyond it’s capacity. Even when affordable housing vouchers are accessible, the issue can be finding a place to use those vouchers. The task for Carson going forward will be to stabilize these services so that their benefits are maximized for the greatest number of people.
We don’t know yet what HUD will look like under Carson. Will funding increase or decrease? Will homelessness be an important issue to the new cabinet? We can only hope that a focus on homelessness and making affordable housing a priority for as many as possible will be priorities to Carson as he begins this leadership role. While we wait to see what happens at HUD you can help support our role to serve women with affordable housing that helps to break the cycle of homelessness by donating here.