The Long, Deep Effect Evictions Have on Children (Points Summer Book Club, Day 2)

This is Day 2 of our Points Summer Book Club discussion of Matthew Desmond's Evicted. The conversation takes place through Friday on Facebook, in the Literary Dallas group. Joining the conversation is easy, but if you need instructions, this post should help.Now, on to today's discussion: "Children didn't shield families from eviction; they exposed them to it," Matthew Desmond writes on Page 287 of Evicted. The presence of children in a household almost tripled a tenant's odds of receiving an eviction judgment. And when evicted parents seek new housing, they repeatedly find themselves shut out. (For example, Arleen and her children move about once a year, often because of eviction. In one home search, Arleen was rejected by 89 prospective landlords before one said yes.)Why do you think landlords are more likely to turn down parents? Are they justified?Is it fair for landlords to tack on surcharges and damage deposits to tenants with children?Should families with kids receive protection while seeking housing?Why do you think families with children were originally not considered a protected class when Congress passed the Fair Housing Act in 1968 (before protections were added in 1988)? What do you make of the many violations of the protections today?For kids who don't have stable housing, what are the long-term effects? (And what are the trickle-down effects on schools and neighborhoods?)Do parents who have trouble providing safe housing for their children deserve to have their children taken away and put in foster care?Click here to visit the Literary Dallas Facebook page and join the conversation.  Continue reading...

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