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Cityscape: Volume 23 Number 3 | The Hispanic Housing Experience in the United States, Part II


The Hispanic Housing Experience in the United States, Part II

Volume 23 Number 3

Mark D. Shroder
Michelle P. Matuga

Movement Toward High Opportunity and Racial and Ethnic Integration for Hispanics in the Housing Choice Voucher Program

Kirk McClure
University of Kansas

Alex Schwartz
The New School

The Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) program is the nation’s tenant-based rental assistance program, which offers the assisted household choice about where to live. Does that choice translate into movement into neighborhoods of high opportunity and racial or ethnic integration, especially among Hispanic households? Unique data from HUD permit tracking of individual households from 2010 through 2017.

That research finds that Hispanic households participate in the HCV program at a rate comparable to their share of the low-income population. The research also indicates that HCV households—particularly Hispanic households—are concentrated in low-opportunity areas in general. Those households tend to live in tracts where the racial or ethnic group of the household is dominant. HCV households who relocate from one census tract to another while in the program show some movement to higher-opportunity tracts, but the largest group of movers (43 percent) chose tracts at the same opportunity level. About 31 percent of households moved to a higher-opportunity neighborhood, but about 26 percent moved to loweropportunity tracts. Hispanic households mirrored that pattern.

Movers in the program demonstrated very limited movement toward racial or ethnic integration. The largest group of movers (43 percent) located in tracts where their own racial or ethnic group was dominant, whereas 20 percent relocated to integrated neighborhoods. Hispanic households showed a similar pattern, with 48 percent relocating to Hispanic-dominated tracts and only 15 percent to integrated tracts.

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