Wednesday, December 28, 2016
When paying the rent means going hungry
It is a sign of the uneven economic terrain impeding the recovery: Although U.S. consumer confidence is at its highest level in 15 years, a combination of stagnant wages and surging housing costs are leaving millions of people scrambling to afford food.
Forty-one percent of cities surveyed by the U.S. Conference of Mayors reported an increase in demand for emergency food assistance. More than half of the Americans applying for emergency food are employed, while only 8 percent were homeless, the study found. The cities with the biggest increases include Des Moines, Iowa, where the number of requests for food help jumped 15 percent, and San Francisco, where it rose 3 percent.
The culprit is the impact of two intersecting trends that is spelling trouble for many working families: slow wage growth in the post-recession years as well as sharply higher rents. In 2013, one of four renters paid half their incomes toward rent, a trend that’s projected by Harvard’s Joint Center for Housing Studies to only worsen over the next several years.
at 12/28/2016 06:30:00 PM