Housing Counselors: Joining The Ranks Of First Responders

Just Economy Conference – May 13, 2021


If the COVID-19 pandemic has taught the housing counseling field anything, it is that the show must go on. Essentially overnight, counseling agencies had to transition to virtual operating space to continue to serve clients as consumers faced financial uncertainty amidst an international health crisis. Housing counselors have joined the class of First Responders tasked with triaging clients through urgent circumstances to avoid loss of housing, access emergency assistance, and advocate for resources to meet the needs of their respective communities. Attendees of this session will hear from housing counseling professionals who worked on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Redlining and Neighborhood Health

Before the pandemic devastated minority communities, banks and government officials starved them of capital.

Lower-income and minority neighborhoods that were intentionally cut off from lending and investment decades ago today suffer not only from reduced wealth and greater poverty, but from lower life expectancy and higher prevalence of chronic diseases that are risk factors for poor outcomes from COVID-19, a new study shows.

The new study, from the National Community Reinvestment Coalition (NCRC) with researchers from the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee Joseph J. Zilber School of Public Health and the University of Richmond’s Digital Scholarship Lab, compared 1930’s maps of government-sanctioned lending discrimination zones with current census and public health data.

Table of Content

  • Executive Summary
  • Introduction
  • Redlining, the HOLC Maps and Segregation
  • Segregation, Public Health and COVID-19
  • Methods
  • Results
  • Discussion
  • Conclusion and Policy Recommendations
  • Citations
  • Appendix

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