KC Star urges a focus on KCMO housing issues on East Side

The Kansas City Star, in an editorial, outlined an agenda for Kansas City Mayor Sly James' remaining 19 months by focusing on the city's East Side and housing issues.

The editorial stated:

"The whole purpose of politics is supposed to be mobilizing for the common good, and the still-lagging East Side needs all of the love it can get.

One of the many issues that requires attention there, and ASAP, is housing insecurity among its many renters.

Recently, Harvard-trained housing researcher and Kansas City native Tara Raghuveer, whose work was cited in Matthew Desmond’s Pulitzer Prize-winning book, “Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City,” shared her study of evictions in Kansas City during the last 17 years with city officials.

The problem, of course, is in no way unique to our town. On the contrary, Raghuveer pointed out that a person making minimum wage and working full-time can’t afford a two-bedroom apartment in a single county in the United States. But in Kansas City, the problem of the some 45 families who lose their homes every business day is concentrated on the city’s East Side."

The editorial continued:

"Eviction goes hand-in-hand with so many other problems — job loss, deteriorating health, educational gaps and more — that we hope James and whoever follows him will give serious thought to some of Raghuveer’s policy prescriptions, especially rent control, landlord regulation and more access to counsel."

The Nov. 26th editorial was a strong, clear statement about the need for focusing on affordable housing issues.