SSN Commentary

We Must Understand Challenges to Address Affordable Housing Problem

Policy field

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College of Charleston

Originally published as "We Must Understand Challenges to Address Affordable Housing Problem," The Post and Courier, March 3, 2021.

In November, two proposals to boost Charleston County’s affordable housing efforts suffered a narrow defeat at the polls. This defeat may be linked to a fundamental misunderstanding of what affordable housing is. How, then, can we better equip ourselves and voters with the knowledge and data to make evidence-based public policy decisions?

This question led me to reflect on the housing policy class I taught last fall at the College of Charleston. Together, we explored the definition of affordable housing, our local context and needs, and the evidence for policy solutions.