We are in the midst of a rapidly evolving public health and economic crisis that threatens the safety, housing, employment, and connectedness of millions of individuals across America, especially the most vulnerable who are under-resourced and living on low to extremely low incomes. The costs of staying in one’s home with the lights on, heating or cooling equipment running, and other appliances operating exceed more than 50% of income for households living on extremely low incomes, and missing just a single paycheck can put that all in jeopardy. Meanwhile, unemployment is skyrocketing.
The impacts from COVID-19 and the accompanying economic recession will worsen America’s housing crisis and likely force households to make tradeoffs between food, medicine, energy, and housing. This problem isn’t new to Energy Efficiency for All (EEFA), and we know the impact is most felt by people of color in this country. We agree with the NAACP that “we must address the systemic underpinnings of inequity” while also providing an emergency response that meets the critical needs in our communities.
Communities across the United States are coming together with an outpouring of aid, and we link to those resources at the end of this page and will update them as we learn more. In addition to this invaluable local work, we have to act now and protect against predatory policies that will harm communities long after the COVID-19 crisis has ended.
EEFA is highlighting policies actively being developed by community groups, local, state, and federal government, mission-driven nonprofit organizations, and academic researchers for protection against eviction and other housing issues. These recommendations can be tailored for any state or local jurisdiction to immediately advocate for the health and safety of everyone. When delivering recommendations please be aware that state and local decision-makers are dealing with many urgent COVID-19 related matters, and we all need to prioritize keeping people healthy and safe during this crisis.
Download the complete Pandemic Response Guidance
The guidance has also been broken up into shareable sections that can be accessed at the following links
- Ensuring Access to Essential Energy and Water Services
- Preventing Eviction and Preserving Affordable Housing
- Protecting All Vulnerable Workers
- Expanding Access to Internet and Phone Services
- Prioritizing Remediation of Unhealthy Housing
Additional Recommended Resources
IssueAdvancing Equitable Policies Promoting Program Solutions Reducing Energy Burdens Preserving Affordable Housing
Focus LevelLocal State National Federal
TopicResilience Data access Energy burden Energy efficiency Energy equity Environmental Justice Energy policy Housing policy Program design Racial equity Technical assistance Utility regulation Water efficiency Workforce development
FormatPolicy recommendations Program recommendations Best practices Standards