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New data on health across the U.S. shows that high housing costs are harming Americans’ health – and that some communities are affected more than others.

美國各地最新的健康數據顯示,高昂的住房成本正在損害美國人的健康,一些社區受到的影響比其他社區更大。

The 2019 County Health Rankings, an annual collaborative report from the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, shows that 11 percent of U.S. households are severely burdened by housing costs. This means that more than 800,000 households spend at least half of their income on housing.

威斯康辛大學人口健康研究所和羅伯特·伍德·約翰遜基金會聯合發布的《2019年縣健康排行榜》顯示,11%的美國家庭承受著沉重的住房負擔。這意味著80多萬家庭將至少一半的收入用于住房。


縣健康排名報告的另一個重要發現是,黑人家庭較多的隔離社區,面臨嚴重住房成本負擔的可能性是白人家庭的兩倍。

Why are black Americans more likely to spend so much of their incomes on housing? One reason is that black neighborhoods were targeted in a process called redlining, especially between the 1930s and 1965. Banks and other lenders excluded black communities from favorable loans and charged higher interest rates on mortgages, leading to higher housing costs – even when homes were valued less than similar homes in white communities.

為什么美國黑人更有可能把這么多收入花在住房上呢? 其中一個原因是,黑人社區在一個被稱為“經濟歧視”的程序中成為目標,尤其是在上世紀30年代至1965年間。銀行和其他貸款機構將黑人社區排除在優惠貸款之外,并收取更高的抵押貸款利率,這導致了更高的住房成本——即使在白人社區的房屋價值低于同類房屋時也是如此。

Redlining is not explicitly practiced in the same way today, but its damage and discrimination remains – such as how banks targeted black homeowners with subprime loans. The consequences of this became clear in the 2008 recession, when black homeowners suffered worse outcomes compared to white homeowners. These practices led to higher foreclosure rates and steeper declines in home values during and after the recession, limiting opportunities for black communities to build wealth through homeownership.

如今,“經濟歧視”并沒有以同樣的方式得到明確實施,但其損害和歧視依然存在——比如銀行如何以次級貸款針對黑人房主。在2008年的經濟衰退中,這一現象的后果變得很明顯,當時黑人房主比白人房主遭受的后果更糟糕。在經濟衰退期間和之后,這些做法導致了更高的止贖率和房價的急劇下跌,限制了黑人社區通過自有住房積累財富的機會。
(注:購房者按期還款給放貸的機構,這個過程稱為‘贖回’。如果出現購買者因故不能按期還貸,超過期限的房屋便被‘止贖’,停止贖回。房屋便歸放貸機構所有)

Effects on health
There is a powerful relationship between housing and health. When people pay too much for housing, they must make tough choices between paying their rent or mortgage or paying for food, medicine and other resources that support their health. In 2015, households that are burdened by housing costs spent 53 percent less on health care, food and transportation combined, compared to households that do not spend more than half of their income on housing.

對健康的影響
住房和健康之間有很強的關系。當人們為住房付出太多時,他們必須做出艱難的選擇,是支付房租、抵押貸款,還是支付食品、藥品和其他維持他們健康的資源。2015年,住房成本負擔沉重的家庭在醫療、食品和交通方面的支出加起來,比住房花費不超過收入一半的家庭少53%。

To afford housing, some families spend less on food, do not buy enough food, or buy less nutritious and cheaper food. These families may also live in homes with structural deficits and other inadequacies, where they are at higher risk for health conditions like lead paint poisoning and asthma.

為了負擔得起住房,一些家庭在食物上花費更少,沒有購買足夠的食物,或者購買營養更少和更便宜的食物。這些家庭也可能是生活在結構缺陷和其他不足的家庭,在那里他們面臨著更高的健康風險,如鉛涂料中毒和哮喘。



A growing problem
As housing costs have risen, incomes have not kept pace. Additionally, affordable housing is not available to everyone who needs it. The National Low Income Housing Coalition reported in March that only 37 affordable homes exist for every 100 extremely low-income renter households. No state has enough homes for every extremely low-income renter household, which are the majority of households that are severely housing cost burdened.

一個日益嚴重的問題
隨著住房成本的上升,人們的收入沒有跟上步伐。此外,并不是所有需要經濟適用房的人都能買得起。全國低收入住房聯盟在3月份報告中說,每100個極低收入租房家庭中,只有37個負擔得起住房。沒有一個州能為每一個極低收入的租房者家庭提供足夠的住房,他們是住房成本負擔嚴重的大多數家庭。

Incomes are stagnating while housing costs, especially renting, continue to rise. As these two forces combine to limit opportunity, more U.S. residents are at risk of becoming burdened by their housing costs and damaging their health, especially low-income and black Americans.

收入停滯不前,而住房成本尤其是租房成本,卻在繼續上漲。由于這兩股力量結合在一起限制了機會,越來越多的美國居民面臨著住房成本增加、健康受損的風險,尤其是低收入和黑人居民。