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Northeast Seattle is where my husband and I have put down roots, raised our three kids, and helped build community. But for too many neighbors and people looking to reside in our neighborhoods, housing costs are prohibitive, and I worry about the ability of the next generation to live in our city. There are the visibly homeless we see on the streets and underpasses, but it is estimated that one third of the homeless in our region are families.

We need housing policies that reflect our economic and cultural diversity. That means accelerating development of quality, affordable, family-friendly housing options throughout Seattle and the region. We need more middle income housing for young people– providing an entry point into the housing market– and we must make sure that we assist fixed income seniors and low income households to prevent displacement and housing instability. It is cheaper to provide supportive housing than to have individuals cycle through the system. We need programs to keep families from losing their homes in the first place. Often it is a temporary issue – just starting a new job, waiting for health insurance coverage to kick in, an illness for someone without adequate paid sick leave and high medical bills – that pushes a family over the edge and into homelessness

I’ll be a strong advocate for housing and land use policies that protect what we love about our neighborhoods, while at the same time making sure we don’t exclude people from obtaining the same opportunities and quality of life we all deserve. I will push for additional resources into the Housing Trust Fund to build more affordable housing and investments into services that prevent homelessness and help neighbors living unsheltered get back on their feet with a “housing first” model and wrap around services that set people up to succeed.