From the Globe:

But with 40,000 of its 250,000 total housing units now government-subsidized and reserved for those of lower income, Boston risks creating a system of modern-day poorhouses — a description which already applies to the public housing system. Our federal public assistance policy today comes with a time limit and work requirement; housing assistance comes with neither, raising the specter of the city facilitating long-term dependency. Indeed, the beneficiaries of housing programs are frequently the same single-parent households that a reformed welfare program has sought to motivate toward upward mobility.

The fact that there are often long waiting lists for new subsidized developments should be discounted; there would be similar long lines if the city began to sell gasoline at 50 cents a gallon. Moreover, subsidized developments are hard to maintain. Indeed, some 754 of the ”new” subsidized units created during the Menino years have been public housing units which had fallen into total disrepair.

So it is that it may well be time for a moratorium on further subsidized housing in Boston.

Source: Mayor must reconsider “affordable” – by Howard Husock, The Boston Globe

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