Roanoke's Section 8 Waiting List is Overwhelmed
- Author: Aubrey Sipes
- Posted: 2023-01-24
Roanoke, Virginia is a city that appears much more like a suburb. Basically, Roanoke is a bit of city infrastructure that went up in the middle of a rural area, and so it's not much at all like cities that people are typically used to. Unlike New York, LA, Chicago, etc, Roanoke's population is relatively low. It only has 100,000 people in the city, a low crime rate, and up until the past two years, it had one of the highest median incomes in the state. However, when news broke about Roanoke's Section 8 waiting list backup yesterday (Jan 18), the state was absolutely shocked to learn just how many people in one small city needed to apply for Section 8.
As of right now, there are more than 4,500 people on a waiting list for Section 8 in Roanoke. This means that 4.5% of the city's residents are either homeless, on the verge of being homeless, or are having too much trouble paying their rent or mortgage. This doesn't take into account the estimated 3-5% of people who never apply for Section 8 when it's backed up, because they know that their efforts are fruitless and they will never be helped by the government. So, realistically, Roanoke may be dealing with upwards of 10% of their population having trouble keeping a roof over their heads. This is something that's incredibly scary. If you can, just imagine this happening in cities of millions instead of a city of 100,000.
Unfortunately, this is exactly what's happening in America's largest cities. It's just that the mainstream corporate media never runs stories about this tragic situation, because that would mean giving negative press to the very politicians that the corporations financially support. This isn't a Republican or Democrat thing; this is a factual data thing. All the data is publicly available and paints the same picture: the corporations that operate America's biggest media networks also support politicians and pay for their campaigns, in exchange for favors once the politicians get elected. This has been an open secret in America for generations. It's just hard to gain traction in the mainstream, again, because the people paying the politicians control the entire flow of information through the corporate media. The same six corporations own every single mainstream media network and newspaper in the United States.
New York City, for instance, has around 9 million people in it. By conservative estimates, there are likely at least 600,000 residents who need to be on Section 8. The real issue here isn't that so many people need Section 8, although that is certainly an issue. The real issue is that, as of just two years ago, only about 20% of that number needed government assistance for housing. America is in such dire straits economically that no amount of government programs can keep up with the phenomenon of citizens becoming poor. A dozen eggs average $10 in America, and the federal government just wants to bicker about meaningless things while shipping as much money overseas as they possibly can.
The people of Roanoke used to live a very tranquil existence, in an economically viable area where poverty was very rare. After two years of rampant inflation, a pandemic, and now an international war, the everyday American citizen is struggling like they never have before since the times of the Great Depression. Some experts even predict that forced rationing is imminent, with the National Guard enforcing it at gunpoint.
It's the Same Story Everywhere
The saddest thing about this is that the story is the same all over America. Day after day, dozens upon dozens of articles flood the Internet, and they all tell the same story. Some town or county in America needs to extend its Section 8 program because it's crushed under the weight of its applicants. Even outside of cities, many rural areas in America are dealing with a massive increase of Section 8 applications, because people just cannot afford to live. They cannot afford to eat. They cannot afford fuel. And despite what the politicians say when they get on a podium, America is dealing with a demonstrable labor shortage, not an all-time low unemployment figure.
Roanoke doesn't have many options available to them. The state isn't wealthy enough to extend the program on its own, and Section 8's funding has been slashed for two years in a row, with Joe Biden personally signing the spending bills that took away the funding for the Department of Housing and Urban Development. It's really turning into a nightmare in America.