The presidents of four Seattle-area universities and colleges have joined forces to declare May 13-17, 2019 as Affordable Housing Week on their campuses. Stephen V. Sundborg, S.J., president of Seattle University; Dr. John Mosby, president of Highline College; Dr. Daniel J. Martin, president of Seattle Pacific University; and Dr. Ana Mari Cauce, president of University of Washington, have signed proclamations or otherwise affirmed the importance of safe, healthy, affordable homes in communities of opportunity. The higher-education institutions join King County and 25 King County cities, including Seattle, in recognizing the benefits of affordable housing to everyone in the community.
To further recognize Affordable Housing Week, local universities are also hosting a first-time conference on their role in addressing homelessness, “Higher Ed on Homelessness: Collaborating for Change,” Friday, May 10 in Seattle. About 75-100 faculty, staff and grad students from more than 10 area higher-ed institutions will share their research, teaching, service learning, community engagement and advocacy best practices. The group will also explore the unique role of higher education in addressing homelessness; define how universities make a difference; highlight what benefits higher education brings to our region and our state on homelessness; and celebrate the accomplishments of students and alumni working to solve homelessness. The conference is hosted by Seattle Pacific University, Seattle University and University of Washington, and is open by invitation to colleagues at other area universities.
Affordable Housing Week, now in its fourth year, is hosted by the Housing Development Consortium of Seattle-King County. The Seattle City Council is expected to sign this year’s proclamation today, and the King County Council is expected to sign at its meeting tomorrow.
Nationwide, 36 percent of university and 46 percent of community college students are housing insecure; what’s more, 12 percent of community college students and 9 percent of university students are homeless, according to a 2018 national survey of 43,000 college students by Wisconsin HOPE Lab.
Universities are individually recognizing Affordable Housing Week as well. Seattle University’s Project on Family Homelessness will host a workshop called “Renters’ Rights 101: Know Your Rights + Assert Your Rights,” Wednesday, May 15, 6:45-8:15 p.m. on campus. Local nonprofits Be:Seattle and Tenants Union of Washington will share what new renters need to know and answer questions. The event is free and open to university students and soon-to-be graduates, and registration is requested.
For more information on Housing Development Consortium and Affordable Housing Week, including a full list of community events: www.housingconsortium.org/affordable-housing-week
University of Washington: Victor Balta, firstname.lastname@example.org , 206-543-2580
Housing Development Consortium: Leah Haberman, email@example.com, 206/682-9541