As Program Moves Poor to Suburbs, Tensions Follow

Solomon Moore, New York Times, August 9, 2008


Under the Section 8 federal housing voucher program, thousands of poor, urban and often African-American residents have left hardscrabble neighborhoods in the nation’s largest cities and resettled in the suburbs.


The foreclosure crisis gnawing away at overbuilt suburbs has accelerated that migration, and the problems. Antioch is one of many suburbs in the midst of a full-blown mortgage meltdown that has seen property owners seeking out low-income renters to fill vacant homes. The most recent Contra Costa County records available show that from 2003 to 2005, the number of Section 8 households in Antioch grew by 50 percent, to about 1,500 from 1,000. Many new residents are African-American; Antioch’s black population has grown to about 20 percent, from 3 percent in 1990.



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