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3C. If Not RAD, then What? The Future of Public Housing

The remaining 1.1 million units of public housing have a documented capital needs backlog of nearly $26 billion. Many low-income families are living in unsafe and unsanitary living conditions due to the program’s chronic underfunding by Congress. The Rental Assistance Demonstration Program (RAD) was created in 2012 to preserve and improve public housing. However, due to their size, administrative capacity, and other factors, many housing authorities cannot utilize RAD as a preservation tool. What does that mean for the remaining public housing stock? What choices do housing authorities and residents have to repair and renovate the properties or seek better living conditions? What can we, as advocates, do to preserve this valuable source of affordable housing while protecting residents from permanent displacement?