A housing crisis for the working poor

  • Article by: JIM SPENCER , Star Tribune
  • Updated: April 23, 2010 - 8:16 PM

Statewide and nationwide, unemployment and stagnant wages have left many low-income wage-earners scrambling.

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shay12Apr. 24, 10 1:23 AM

this is crazy everything is going up and there's no money and no jobs and they say go back to school not everybody thats lucky some of us as family's and don't have the money or the time to do this and if you do have a good job or career you are scared you may get laid off and what then something has to change

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liqid8Apr. 24, 10 7:31 AM

In the luxury resort town of Aspen, CO every time someone builds a new home or rebuilds and expands a home they require a portion of the project go to affordable, sutainable housing for the working poor in the area. It is a beautiful thing! Ski-ya!

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michbel6Apr. 24, 10 9:03 AM

I don't know how some people make it- we have lost our house in the last year, and I will be losing my job this summer as well. It will be very tight for us as well, and I am not sure if I will be able to find another job anytime soon, as there just aren't that many out there. I keep looking. It is truly scary for everyone. I am not sure why some think this recession is over, no one that I know is doing better than they were even 5 years ago. There has to be some way that we can pull this country out of the hole we have dug- besides bailouts. Any ideas?

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mannyheadApr. 24, 10 9:23 AM

it is called PEOPLE before PROFITS

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changeagent2010Apr. 24, 10 9:45 AM

I agree there's a problem -- my own bank account and lack of job/income progress parallels those in the story. I agree it's more of an income problem than availability problem. I disagree that "more federal and state subsidies" aka rent vouchers is the solution.

How about rental rates coming down to what the market can bare? How about wages going up for the bottom of the corp. ladder instead of the top? How about renters,landlords & builders get more creative about shared or semi-shared living arrangements so there are ways to spread living expenses around? How about a job program that actually produces and enforeces living wage jobs? How about subsidies, grants and micro-loans to fund people start their own small business? How about saying "no" to the utility companies when they come to the PUC annually for rate increases?

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tiredbikerApr. 24, 10 1:34 PM

this article assumes the middle class does not have a housing crisis. Dear Star Trib: WHY DON'T YOU PUBLISH AN ARTICLE ABOUT THE MIDDLE CLASS HOUSING CRISIS??????? Hmmmm???????????????????

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mwanglieApr. 24, 10 1:44 PM

I have 2 kids that I am the primary care giver on 6 of every 14 days. Due to income share child support I pay the samesupport amount as a parent who has thier childre one day a month. My spouse is disabled and my step sons father is dead. I am unemployed and gross about one interview every 2 months.Ironicly Im unemployed because my employer bounce my payroll checks and failed to pay the child support they were taking out of my check. Anoka Co CS sent me a recapture and told me if I remained with that employer I would be responsible for paying what my employer had aready taken. Needless to say I qualified for UI as the employers actions cause legal action to be brought against me. Well 4 week after the bottom droppedout of the job market. So would you believe it if I told you that an Anoka Co child support Judge KIM BRANDELL determined that I was voluntarily unemployed because I could not apply for 9.00 an hr jobs or I would be putting myself in this exact position. I like most HATE living off Gov subsidies or UI, but my current spouse was disabled when I met her but we didnt know at the time it would be perminent. She has a condition that gradually and painfully deteriorates joint tissue so she can not provide and income. SS takes over 3 years to get, if you win the appeal, and if not you reapply and wait another 3. I tried explaining to the judge that my increase in income for a 9.00 job was a gross of 600.00 dollars a month over UI, however the increase in cost to me, due to loss of housing and DHS subsidies and the increase in support is 1,000.00. Id be in this exact position in only 2 month that this person was when homeless. The system IS TRUELY built to avoid getting off of it unless you can find the 15.00+ an hour job. Susequently, I know sit with a presumptive determination of income at 9.00 and am paying 320.00 over in suport thanwhat I should be if not for the erronious, clueless and idiotic determination of MAGISTRATE BRANDELL. Also ironic is the fact that it was because of the Magistrate that I had to take the first job I was offered at 10.00 an hr that put me in this position and actually lowered my quarterly earning so I now receieve 263.00 a week instaed of 350.00. 85.00 of which goes to support based on presumptive income. But at least his decision does not effect housing or DHS or I be dead in the water.

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tiredbikerApr. 24, 10 4:14 PM

They make three figure salaries and live in bubbles. It is a rare judge or magistrate that truly understands what is happening to the average moderate income person, let alone low income. They simply don't care. And somewhere along the line they believe a $9 hr job will take care of a family. If they ever in their bubbled lives have lived normal to poor, they have selectively made the choice to forget and slam it to you. I am sorry for the situation that was created for you.

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