Changing the Narrative of Affordable Housing
The growing demand for affordable homes, coupled with the increasing local opposition known as NIMBYism (“Not in My Back Yard”), signals a need to put a face to affordable housing. As a strategy to educate the public about the individuals that benefit from living in these communities, as well as the importance of affordable homes as a vital component of a healthy region, Professor Michael Rios, a faculty affiliate with the CRC, and Brandon Louie, a graduate student in Community Development, have completed the report, “Changing the Narrative of Affordable Housing.” They were part of a team comprised of faculty, students, and CRC staff that partnered with the California chapter of the AARP and the Sacramento Housing Alliance to explore the opposition to and need for affordable housing, with a specific emphasis on the Sacramento region. Utilizing data from primary and secondary sources—including interviews with local housing advocates and affordable home residents, community workshops, academic journal articles, and materials from other housing campaigns—the study found a number of commonalities between the local struggle for affordable housing and similar efforts across the country. The report describes the project’s approach, process and findings, highlighting what we know nationally and locally about this important issue. It also presents recommendations that identify potential messages, framing, data, resources, and organizational strategies to include in a campaign focused on changing the narrative of affordable housing in the Sacramento region.