As a Unitarian Universalist, I recognize the inherent worth and dignity of every human being, and hold that access to affordable, habitable housing is a fundamental right in a just society. We have new Mainers, young adults out of school, people who are priced out of purchasing a home trying to rent and workers trying to move to Maine, all struggling with finding an apartment they can afford.

My college-aged daughter is living with us because the rents on a studio or a one-bedroom are more than our mortgage. At work, we’ve had people not accept jobs because they can’t find a place to live in Maine. This is not sustainable. Maine has an aging population and we need young people to remain or move to this state.

Families should be able to stay together locally, instead of moving away to places with affordable housing.

Maine leaders, people are struggling right now and need rent relief. It’s important to build affordable housing for the future and we also must address the crisis more immediately. People can’t wait.

Naneen Chace-Ortiz

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