Habitat for Humanity of Oregon joined hundreds of local Habitat organizations and home affordability advocates this week for Habitat for Humanity’s annual legislative conference, held virtually for the first time: Habitat on the Hill 2021: For home, from home.
The three-day event, normally held in Washington, D.C., gives advocates an opportunity to convene with congressional leaders, address and discuss actionable solutions to the underlying policies and systems that hinder access to housing affordability and rally with one another.
As Habitat, through our national Cost of Home advocacy campaign, deepens our role in addressing the home affordability challenges that have been further exacerbated by COVID-19, Habitat on the Hill will focus heavily on historic and systemic racism in housing policy, and how the pandemic’s economic disparities have created a critical need for immediate and long-term housing relief.
“A safe, stable and affordable home transforms a family’s life,” said Megan Parrott, Director of Engagement at Habitat Oregon. “It leads to greater economic stability, access to quality education, increased civic and social engagement and better health. Especially right now, as we continue to experience the COVID-19 pandemic, home is our virtual classroom and office space. It’s where we cook and eat all of our meals. It’s our safe haven from the health crisis. Home is everything.”
Habitat Oregon, along with affiliate staff and a homeowner based in Lebanon, Portland, St. Helens and Tillamook, met with Sens. Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden and Reps. Bentz, Blumenauer, Bonamici, DeFazio and Schrader to urge them to invest in housing affordability as part of any future economic recovery and infrastructure measure by prioritizing foreclosure prevention, neighborhood revitalization and housing production for low-income homeowners. These investments are critical for preventing major losses in homeownership and in wealth for communities of color, as well as expanding access to new affordable homes for all.
Join the conversation using #HabitatontheHill and #CostOfHome as Habitat works toward its campaign goal to create policies that will allow at least 10 million American families have access to a stable, affordable place to call home.