On September 14, 2023, State Representative Kate Lipper-Garabedian (D-Melrose) hosted her 11th Community Conversation. The event focused on the Commonwealth’s housing crisis, a top concern for residents, with an overview of recently enacted state laws and investments, opportunities for further state and local action, and resources, opportunities and challenges faced when it comes to accessible, affordable and high-quality housing options in the Commonwealth. Lipper-Garabedian was joined by distinguished leaders from the state and local levels, as well as members of the housing advocacy sector. The Community Conversation included recorded remarks from Malden-Based Housing Families Inc. (HFI) and a Medford Community Housing client to humanize the discussion that followed. The Representative was joined by Massachusetts Executive Office of Housing and Livable Communities Chief of Policy Eric Shupin, Malden Director of Strategic Planning and Community Development Deborah Burke, Citizens’ Housing and Planning Association (CHAPA) Deputy Director of Public Policy “Abhi” Kurve, Massachusetts Housing Partnership Director of Home Ownership Elliot Schmiedl and Metro Housing Boston Director of Housing Supports Felisha Marshall.
During the event, Representative Lipper-Garabedian provided an overview of the state of housing in Massachusetts, including challenges of insufficient supply and lack of affordability for both renters and homeowners. She further summarized recent legislative actions to address housing, such as blessing the creation of the new Executive Office of Housing and Livable Communities, passing the Housing Choice Initiative and MBTA Zoning reforms and making historic investments in housing, including in the Fiscal Year 2024 budget. The Representative also highlighted related legislation introduced this session, including two bills she filed. The event proceeded with a guided discussion facilitated by the Representative where panelists shared their work to date, discussed existing supports for those seeking housing stability and previewed work to come.
“Given the ongoing need for solutions to Massachusetts’s housing crisis, I am glad to make space for a conversation on this topic,” said Representative Lipper-Garabedian. “The September 14 Community Conversation on Housing served as an opportunity for us to hear from experts and advocates in the housing community about challenges faced in the Commonwealth, existing resources and programs, and needed policies to support those residing here.”
A recording of the event can be accessed on Representative Lipper-Garabedian’s YouTube channel at https://tinyurl.com/KLG-HousingCC.