According to a 2018 study by the National Low Income Housing Coalition, the affordable monthly rent for a minimum wage worker in the Fredericksburg area would be $377.
Yet the 2018 fair market rent for Fredericksburg City and Stafford and Spotsylvania counties, set by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, was $1,561—more than four times what the study considers affordable.
And the Fredericksburg area has higher rates of eviction than the national average, with between 3.8 and 5.6 evictions per 100 rental homes, compared with the national average of 2.3 evictions per 100, the database Eviction Lab found.
Virginia Organizing has proposed the idea of establishing a local housing trust fund that would help residents of Fredericksburg and Stafford facing eviction. The pot of money would be funded by public and private sources.
The group will hold a rally for an affordable housing trust Saturday from 1–2 p.m at St. George’s Episcopal Church in downtown Fredericksburg.
The group’s Fredericksburg Organizer, Rabib Hasan, said it has presented its idea for a housing trust in individual meetings with Mayor Mary Katherine Greenlaw and City Council member Jason Graham.
“We are currently awaiting a response from City Manager Tim Baroody about getting a presentation in front of Council so we can present to all seven council members at once,” Hasan said.
The rally will feature speakers telling their stories of struggling to make ends meet and facing eviction.