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Brunswick County Homeless Coalition aims to increase affordable housing availability

As the pandemic continues and the eviction moratorium is over, more and more families face...
As the pandemic continues and the eviction moratorium is over, more and more families face evictions.(WECT)
Published: Sep. 21, 2021 at 4:19 PM EDT
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BRUNSWICK COUNTY, N.C. (WECT) - As the pandemic continues and the eviction moratorium is over, more and more families face evictions. However, one group has helped a dozen families keep roofs over their heads.

Brunswick County Homeless Coalition (BCHC) board member Paul Witmer says the common issue among their clients is a lack of affordable places to live. Essential workers like teachers, police officers and restaurant employees often don’t get paid enough to live in most housing available and that’s led some to struggle through hard times.

BCHC believes that in order to address homelessness, it must also address evictions and affordable housing issues. The Brunswick County Board of Commissioners heard from the Coalition at last night’s meeting. The idea Witmer presented involves forming a task force to support the effort to develop and expand affordable housing areas by incentivizing developers to include affordable housing in their development plans.

The hope is that the county’s planning board and contractors will partner with them to help connect families with affordable living spaces.

“Right now, everything in Brunswick County has a waiting list and it’s a long waiting list,” said Witmer. “We need more affordable housing that people can move into. They’re building more apartments in Leland and Calabash and we’d like to try and make sure some of those units are affordable housing.”

Lately, the Homeless Coalition has seen more families facing eviction because of the moratorium ending last month but because everyone knew it was coming, BCHC was able to plan ahead and figure out solutions to all the families that asked for their help.

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