As the median rent spikes to $2,000 across the country, housing justice activists double down on efforts to counter price-gouging landlords.

By Eleanor J. Bader, The Progressive Magazine

When real estate giant Redfin issued its monthly rental report in June, it noted that, for the first time in history, the median monthly rent in the U.S. had surpassed $2,000, a 15 percent bump from the previous year.

Anti Eviction protest at the so-called Hawthorn House in the Avenues district of Salt Lake City.

Austin saw the largest increase of any metropolitan area, with rents over the past year surging by 48 percent to a median of $2,707 a month. But regardless of whether you’re a tenant in Anaheim (median: $3,400); Boston (median: $3,970); Chicago (median: $2,454); Fort Lauderdale (median: $3,157); Los Angeles (median: $3,400); Miami (median: $3,157); Newark (median: $4,008) or Seattle (median: $3,097), rents are skyrocketing everywhere.

Reverend Liz Theoharis, co-chair of the Poor People’s Campaign and director of the Kairos Center for Religions, Rights, and Social Justice, calls it “a massive housing emergency.”

Coupled with the ongoing pandemic and ever-increasing food and fuel prices, low and moderate-income people in every corner of the country are suffering—and many are losing their homes.

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