Changing the Narrative: A Public Housing Project (content produced by Lewis Wallace)

….and thank you for your interest and willingness to engage!! Start below for a brief “how we got here” and what I think this conversation is about and the things we need to point out.

The initial stage of this project began in 2016 as a way to chronicle the changing narrative around public housing and the shelter crisis that exists in New York City. The support and resources from my place of employment were integral in developing a very successful workshop and starting this site to archive the work that has taken place and the work to come. The idea was borne of a need to engage public housing residents in conversation around their lived realities and experience and not let the dominant narrative remain without countering it with depth and substance that only the residents could provide.

At this new stage, the project will center research and examine the momentum of social movements, housing activism, and policies that are changing the landscape of the public housing program, especially in the United States.

As this shelter crisis becomes more urgent, pervasive, and persistent, this platform will be used to illuminate the cross-sections of money and power, race and class, and space and status at the center of housing problem. This world-wide failure to adequately house a country’s citizens is not a novel condition. Housing inequality has existed for as long as there have been ruling class systems and as long as there is a ruling class or an upper class or those who feel that they are deserving and others are not, there will be inequality, especially around the topic of shelter.

The concept of housing as a public (or state) endeavor for inadequate wage workers began as a way to put people to work and provide safe, clean, affordable housing for working families. The bulk of this material will be centered in the United States and focus on the problems here of housing for the public good.