Social Welfare Policy Critique
Social Welfare Policy Critique
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Social Welfare Policy Critique
Public Housing program in the United States is run by the Federal, State and local assistance to give subsidy help to the lower–income families in the country. These are very affordable houses that are priced much lower as compared to the market rates. Another significance of this policy was to provide opportunities for lower-income people to live in more comfortable residences within the city rather than to live in areas that were away from the city. The Federal and State governments were established in the form of block and apartments. These housing authorities were run by the United States Department of Housing. Currently, about 1.2 million families are currently living in these public housing schemes.
Initially, in the construction of a housing project, it faced a lot of complications. During the first decade of the scheme many cities face construction problems and due to those negative consequences have to stop the project. Apart from the positive aspect of the housing scheme, there are some negative externalities of those housing projects.
History of Housing Policy
The Federal housing policy is working for the economic stability and cost-effectiveness of the real estate in the private sector, domestic finance, and supply industries since 1933. The administration of President Roosevelt felt the need for the problem of construction of affordable houses for lower-income families. These were the privately owned houses, but the government subsidized these under social policy. In 1959, these programs were implemented, and they continued until the 1980s (Von Hoffman, 2018). Under this policy, different acts were passed later on years.
Moreover, the Housing and Community Development Act 1974 brought necessary changes in those housing programs, and more grants were provided to the local authorities. It formed differently from the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) from other housing and substructure programs. All the programs under the Housing Policy seek to help low and middle-income families by driving the construction of open access, affordable apartments and reassuring the restoration of public accommodation for the lower income families. In the 1980s, President Ronald Reagan initiated the low-income housing tax credit that was considered as the major source of federal aid for low-cost housing. Moreover, in 1992 Congress ratified the HOPE VI urban renewal program that provides funds and supports to the low-rise houses than high-rise housing in order to avoid the lack of funds consumed on repairs (Von Hoffman, 2018). In 1996, Bill Clinton started an initiative "One strike, and you're out" that warned the people living in the public-housing who had criminal records.
Furthermore, in 2005 HUD took the initiative to count the homeless people living in the country. In 2007 the housing market crashed, and more than 3 million homes were shut down in 2009. However, in 2012 under the administration of President Obama, the Rental Assistance Demonstration program was created that transformed the public housing into private-sector housing. Although many changes were made in the federal housing programs, the shortage of houses still exists for the lower-income people.
Housing supporters struggled for years in order to establish and fund the National Housing Trust Fund. They aimed to build, fund preserve, rehabilitate and operate the housing programs that are affordable for low-income families. Since the 1970s, the authority was given to local governments to plan and construct housing programs in local areas. However, in some areas, it caused a greater number of challenges because of the decrease in federal housing assets for the communities. These programs were very important for low-income residents, but local authorities were unable to implement the programs properly.
Alternative Social Policies of Housing Policy
Successful housing policy will be encouraged that unites the citizens, corporate and the government organizations by recognizing the needs and demands of each stakeholder. In this section, different alternatives policies will be discussed that are affordable and can be adopted for the medium and low-income families.
The first alternative that is mostly preferred by the viewers is to the development of bonus and fee waiver program that can be used for the construction of low-income houses (Paul, 2019). These housing plans can be used for the medium income people to grant them some funds and other density bonuses to build new houses for their families. Many of the arguers believe that building or constructing houses by a density bonus and waiver fees.
Secondly, another alternative can be a form of the housing trust fund from the revenues of land transfer tax receipts. Once the legislature approves the land transfer tax bill, then it will be easier to maintain the housing authority programs. It will overcome the problem of running out of the funds of the housing authority. Many policymakers think that it will be an effective option and currently, many of the states have adopted this alternative policy.
Likewise, the other option can be the establishment of the Federal Low-Income Housing Tax Credit that was previously proposed (Paul, 2019). People think that it would be an affordable means to build housing projects for lower-income people. This incentive should be provided to the owners of lower income housing schemes.
Another Best option is the housing voucher that is the crucial method for subsidized housing facilities provided in the United States. It is also housing assistance to the lower income families. These vouchers were directly provided to the landlords in order to help the eligible families with their house rent payment. However, it was observed that some programs related to the housing projects were focusing on the mixed-income areas rather than focusing the households in poorer areas.
The Values, Beliefs, and Assumptions of the Housing Policy
The adverse living condition of the middle and low-income families in the past made the American government bring some measurable policies that would address the problem. The economic complexities during the Great Depression made Franklin Roosevelt to initiated a public housing program for the people. By the end of World War II, the government took several wrong turns to propose a winning policy (Von Hoffman,s2019). However, by 1960s they were able to solve the crisis. Johnson Administration was able to establish a National Housing Production programs by subsidizing the private-firms of construction.
Likewise, it was little effort by the government to serve the people from low-income families in the United States. Those social programs were presented by the activists and its successful implementation of the policies during the crisis. At that time, the wages of middle-income earners and low-income earners were much lower. There were weak labor unions at factories. Moreover, workers from minority groups were paid less. At the same time, educated people from lower backgrounds were facing unemployment issues. There were limited safety nets for the people at that time, so people were having hard times. In such conditions, it was impossible for those groups to own houses. For the majority of the population, it was very hard to own houses. Therefore, the government felt the need of these people, and it came up with the public housing policies for the people. The government was contributing to a social matter under the umbrella of the social policy. Throughout history, different policies were made, and various programs were introduced to overcome the issue. However, due to some weaknesses, this policy could not achieve all the objectives.
Housing Policy in Perspective Social Worker and the people
Housing Policy was an effort to overcome the problems of the lower and middle-income families related to housing. From the day start to till today the US government has proposed thousands of programs under the public housing policy. It brought many reforms in the policy throughout the 20th century. However, there was some complication in each program. Even after the successful implementation of the programs, various issues aroused. Some of the researches show that it had increased concentrated poverty, crime, drug usage and low-performance in education. According to the analysts, these problems were created due to the over-dependence of people on public subsidies. Although, these programs also benefitted many vulnerable families and helped them a lot.
The failure of Public Housing policy does not only relate to the people. There were some implementation issues. The housing authorities lack the proper allocation of fund and resources. There was mismanagement. When the government failed to manage, it demolished the programs (Karger and Stoesz, 2018). However, people living in these houses were happy because they were receiving other social help. Some negative aspects of the public housing program that people were facing house ownership, crimes and health risk in those houses.
In conclusion, the Public Housing program in the United States is run by the Federal, State and local assistance to give subsidy help to the lower–income families in the country. These are very affordable houses that are priced much lower as compared to the market rates. The history of Public Housing starts since 1934, and it is continued in modified form. Successful housing policy will be encouraged that unites the citizens, corporate and the government organizations by recognizing the needs and demands of each stakeholder. There were some alternative policies that were recommended in the replacement of Public Housing policy. However, due to some implementation and fund issues, this scheme was not so successful.
Karger, Howard Jacob, and Stoesz, David, (2018). American social welfare policy: A pluralistapproach. Eighth Edition. Boston: Allyn & Bacon
Paul, M. R (2019). Policy Alternatives for Affordable Housing In Dare County.
Von Hoffman, A. (2012). History lessons for today's housing policy: The politics of low-incomehousing. Housing Policy Debate, 22(3), 321-376.
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