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Letter: Lawmakers must do more to protect individuals experiencing homelessness

letter to the editor

The economic fallout of COVID-19 is devastating.

Millions of low-wage workers have been laid off, making it virtually impossible to pay the rent or mortgage; for instance, the average rent for an apartment in Durham can go well over $1,000, taking up nearly the full amount given to beneficiaries from the emergency legislation, leaving next to no money for food, insurance and countless other essentials.

Though I am grateful Congress has passed emergency legislation to help people experiencing housing instability and homelessness, more action is needed. In the next coronavirus response bill, Congress must pass a national moratorium on evictions and foreclosures and provide substantial resources for emergency rental assistance.

We must also look ahead. Creating a refundable "renters' tax credit" to help low-income renters cover rising housing costs will give people the financial security to know that when the next crisis comes, we will be ready.

I urge our members of Congress to promptly pass measures to help struggling workers and families secure stable housing to get them through this crisis and beyond.

Joon Young Lee is a Trinity first-year.

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