Public Housing Should Be the DFL Mayor's FIRST Priority. Here's Why.

37th Street Manor. Image courtesy of the Minneapolis Public Housing Authority. MPHA does not endorse any candidate.

37th Street Manor. Image courtesy of the Minneapolis Public Housing Authority. MPHA does not endorse any candidate.

At this point in the mayor's race, we've heard a lot of talk about affordable housing, but very little about public housing. Because public housing is the city's largest provider of affordable housing, it really needs to take center stage when we talk about our housing crisis. If we don't take action now to ensure that our public housing units are adequately funded, updated, and maintained, this crisis will only get worse.

Many of the candidates, including the current mayor, have stated over and over that they want to see more "equity" in the way Minneapolis operates. However, leaving behind our most vulnerable citizens -- our poor, our elderly, our disabled -- is one of the least equitable thing we can do. If everyone in our city does not have a safe, sanitary, and welcoming place to live, then we do not have equity. Period.

A steadfast commitment to public housing must be the first pillar of the mayor's plan for the equitable sharing of resources in our city. Of course, as anyone who has been married will tell you, a commitment takes more just saying the words. The mayor must advocate at the federal level for adequate funding and engage citizens to help strengthen our cause. I am not only committed to doing that, I am already doing that by taking this action.

Tom Hoch