Waynesboro vigil calls for more affordable housing

Published: Jan. 22, 2023 at 6:10 PM EST
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WAYNESBORO, Va. (WVIR) - Thousands of families around Virginia struggle to afford a place to live.

Community members and organizations - Virginia Organizing, Embrace Community Center, and the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship -gathered for a vigil in Waynesboro Sunday, January 22, as way to bring awareness to this housing crisis.

“We hope to teach people in the community who are struggling how to gather their strength and be their own voice,” Connie Wright-Zink with Virginia Organizing said. “We’ve heard a lot of their stories, personal anecdotes about how difficult it is and how frightened they are to make any kind of place against the landlords.”

Wright-Zink says rents are going up even if the standards of the home are not.

Andrea Jackson, a volunteer with Virginia Organizing, says another issue is that some program are hard to navigate.

“The system is very clogged up,” Jackson said.

Sunday’s vigil was to show that the time for more affordable housing is now.

“This can happen to anybody, so we need to prioritize trying to have safety nets, trying to make sure everyone has affordable housing, and ensure that everyone has access,” Jackson said.

Virginia Organizing also shared tips for way people to take action:

“Write letters to the editor to the paper, try to write or call the City Council. A petition that we’re going to be circulating today hoping that we can get a mentor selection program, which is being done in several other cities in Virginia,” Wright-Zink said.

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