Last night, Mayor Gray announced a new plan to invest in affordable housing: a goal of building and preserving 10,000 units of affordable housing and a commitment of $100 million to that goal. The audience reacted with a standing ovation. They applauded the Mayor harder for that announcement than anything else in his speech.
Most of the speech focused on DC’s economic growth and making sure DC residents are job ready. He began to talk about the need for affordable housing by highlighting groups across the Continuum of Housing:
“Everyone deserves to benefit from prosperity – including: the seniors who paved the way for that very success; those in our workforce – like police officers, firefighters, and teachers; and a truly prosperous and successful city does not forget its most vulnerable residents, like people who are homeless and those with disabilities. This investment means we must preserve and expand affordable housing.”
The Mayor is calling his plan a “major affordable housing initiative” with a goal of 10,000 units preserved and produced and a $100 million commitment. This is “on top of our existing and other planned affordable housing investments.”
The details of this initiative are unclear, and we’ll let you know when we know more. We will continue to advocate for increasing funding through the Housing Production Trust Fund and the other programs we know we need to meet the needs of residents across the Continuum of Housing.
The standing ovation at the State of the District was a great sign of how many people are with us in support of decent, safe housing that DC residents can afford. We also applaud this action! One hundred million dollars is a great start towards making sure there are 10,000 additional affordable homes for District residents. An ongoing commitment, however, will be needed to make it a reality. With your support we’ve gotten a huge promise for affordable housing after years of austerity.
This would not have been possible without your voice! Together we have sent a strong message about the importance of affordable housing to the District, and city officials have heard our call. Thanks to everyone who has taken action, especially those who came to the State of the District Address and the Housing For All: A Vision for DC rally. With your support we will continue to fight for Housing For All!