It’s easy to make assumptions about government programs and the people that serve. But what we often forget is that these programs were created out of need and that their continued existence proves that that need still exists.
The Housing Choice (Section 8) Voucher program, which subsidizes rent for low-income families, is no different. When you think about some who’d be part of this program, what words come to mind? Depending on your race, gender and background, many things may be dancing in your head. Before drawing conclusions, let’s look at some other characteristics of the Housing Choice (Section 8) Voucher program and the people it serves.
- The average annual incomes for families receiving vouchers is $13,478
- 41% of families have one member, 21% have two, 17% have three, and 20% have four to six
- 49% of those family’s head of household identify as white, 46% as black/African-American and 17% as Hispanic/Latino (more than one answer is allowed)
- 58% of families have been a part of the program for at least 5 years
Research shows the benefits of the program outweigh the costs.
According to a 2010 study, the yearly net benefit amount for voucher recipients ranges from approximately $650 to $2,800 per year. This speaks to the program’s efficiency and ability to help those who participate. Benefits come in personal and social, monetary and intrinsic benefits including increased achievement in children and reduced crime and substance abuse in communities.