Raleigh leaders creating 'injustice' in housing market: Wake coalition

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- The Wake County Housing Justice Coalition is airing their grievances with the City of Raleigh over "injustices."

Members of the community-led organization say not enough is being done to help residents who are being pushed out of low-income minority communities, or fall 30 percent below the area median income.

"We have tax dollars to ensure that people have a sustainable place to live," said member Wanda Gilbert-Coker. "(The Raleigh) Housing and Neighborhoods Department is definitely perpetuating gentrification, without a doubt."
The coalition argues that sparkly new housing options come at a price and some hard-working people are being priced out.

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"We're talking about nurses. We're talking about CNAs. We're talking about receptionists. We're talking about people who drive the buses, so we're talking about frontline workers," said member Wanda Hunter.

The City of Raleigh says it is committed to offering more affordable housing and it is a priority.

Since 2016, the City has completed more than 1,400 new affordable units and about 350 others should be finished by the end of the year.

Raleigh voters did approve an $80 million Affordable Housing Bond on the November ballot.

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Most of the money, $28 million, is going to constructing new homes over the next five years with the private sector and offering opportunity to those who earn less than 30 percent of the area median income.
$24 million is heading gap financing. Renters or first-time buyers could benefit from this.

Coalition members feel there's room for more to be done.

"The City of Charlotte has an affordable housing plan. The Town of Rocky Mount is drafting an affordable housing policy plan. All that Raleigh has is a 2030 comprehensive plan for growth," said community activist and lawyer Yolanda Taylor.

The City said additional affordable housing is in the pipeline.

1,300 new affordable housing units are projected to be complete by 2023 across 11 separate communities.
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