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Top Reads, Week of 5/27

Check out our top three reads of the week. They cover the challenges and opportunities facing American communities right now. This week, we’re reading about the struggle to create affordable housing in Connecticut communities, applying a racial equity lens to CDFI work, and the link between health care spending and social programs. 

Have something to add to our list? Let us know on Twitter at @LISC_HQ

Separated by Design: How Some of America’s Richest Towns Fight Affordable Housing
Jacqueline Rabe Thomas, Connecticut Mirror

“In a liberal state that has provided billions in taxpayer money to create more affordable housing, decisions at local zoning boards, the Connecticut Capitol and state agencies have thwarted court rulings and laws intended to remedy housing segregation. As far back as data has been kept, Connecticut’s low-income housing has been concentrated in poor cities and towns, an imbalance that has not budged over the last three decades.” Continue [+]...

Can Using a Racial Equity Lens Increase Capital in Communities of Color?
Joe Neri, Shelterforce

“Simply put: Old government-sanctioned bank regulations drove down the property/land value for decades, and now current bank regulations prevent investment in those areas where appraised-values are low. The bank might still make a loan—but for a 75 percent loan-to-value ratio where the determined “value” is unjustly low. Construction costs will be the same, but the as-built value will be lower, forcing a lower loan amount. No nonprofit should have to raise more money to serve kids in communities of color than they would have to raise to serve kids in white communities.” Continue [+]...

A Secret to Better Health Care
Robert E. Rubin and Kenneth L. Davis, The New York Times Opinion

“If our spending on social programs were more in line with other developed countries, our health care costs would fall. That means that as policymakers evaluate a social program, they should weigh not only its direct and second-order benefits — from reducing crime and recidivism to increasing productivity — but also its effect on lowering federal health care costs.” Continued [+]...


The views and opinions expressed in the articles above are those of the authors and publications we are listing, and do not necessarily reflect LISC’s perspective.