June 26, 2009

Beyond Bread: DC Unemployment in Double Digits

~The rate of unemployment in DC has officially entered the double digits at 10.7 percent, putting it above the national average of 9.4 percent, regardless of the District’s steady supply of federal government jobs. While Washington is one of the cities in the US that is actually creating jobs during the Recession, the jobs that are created usually cater towards those more affluent with higher education residing in Virginia and Maryland. Unemployment is also grossly disproportionate in DC: Ward 3 had an unemployment rate of 2.5 percent in April while Ward 8, which encompasses Anacostia (where Bread for the City has its SE location) experienced a 23.3 percent unemployment rate.

~The Department of Housing and Community Development has received $33.7 million in stimulus funds from the Department of the Treasury’s American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to "spur the continued development of affordable housing units." Considering that, according to the DC Fiscal Policy Institute, the DHCD has over eighty housing projects that are stuck due to lack of funding, this grant may help to slightly alleviate the rising housing and foreclosure crises in DC as well as the negative effects these problems pose (pdf) to individuals, families and communities.

~We recently posted on our blog as well as on Twitter our need to fill the gap in our food budget for this past May. Thanks to many donors as well as the coverage of our financial situation on the Bloomingdale, DCBlogs, and Dining in DC blogs, we have been able to raise about $5,000 (!!) over the last three days, leaving us $5,360 away from reaching our goal. Thanks to all those who have helped, and please continue to donate to help us meet this challenge!

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