Through the columns of your esteemed newspaper, I would like to draw your attention towards an important matter in our community: homelessness. As an essential worker in the Yuba-Sutter area I see first-hand the many faces of this demographic and have come to understand the multitude of barriers that they come up against. However, it is my concern over the decimation of affordable housing that has been growing.
In spite of the statewide rent control efforts housing prices in Sutter County increased over 23% last year. Landlords profiting off of housing insecurity has become the status quo as rent prices have skyrocketed beyond affordability and the expectation of earning three times the rent has become the new norm. As we continue to see the rise of housing prices we will continue to see the swelling of the homeless population, with more people showing up on our streets, along our river bottoms, and in our shelters, because most will be unable to afford or sustain housing.
I recently had the privilege of assisting an 80-year-old veteran who had been unexpectedly displaced from his apartment of twenty-one years, due to a fire. Even with family assisting him, his excellent credit and his decent retirement he was unable to find affordable housing on his own, because he did not make three times the rent. Many of us are just one disaster away from homelessness.
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