CORE MESSAGE: A decent home for our families and ourselves is central to the American promise of opportunity, a source of security and pride. The chance to own a home we can afford, under fair terms, is a fundamental part of the American Dream. Rebuilding that dream is in our national interest, and crucial to our economic recovery.
USE AN OVERARCHING CORE NARRATIVE to tell the story of “home opportunity” in different ways. The narrative has five basic elements:
- Values. Opportunity, economic security, the common good.
- The Real causes. Emphasize that the prime causes of the foreclosure crisis were abuses by lenders and Wall Street and inadequate rules and enforcement.
- Shared harms. This fallout is undermining the economic security of families and the stability of communities, and is deepening inequality throughout our country. That hurts all of us.
- Keeping the ladder of opportunity sturdy for everyone in our country is crucial to America's future, and to a lasting economic recovery.
- Despite the progress we’ve made toward equal opportunity for all, far too many Americans are unplugged from decent jobs, fair mortgage lending, or a shot at running a business. For instance, women in our state earn just 77¢ for every dollar that men earn, and women of color earn only 66¢ per dollar. That’s bad for our economy, and contrary to our national values.
- Modest programs that promote equal opportunity are one important tool for ensuring that all communities have a chance to achieve economic security and contribute to our state’s economy. We must preserve these policies while at the same time pursuing others that advance our shared prosperity, like small business counseling, student aid, and worker training.
- Host a community meeting or write a letter to the editor supporting strong equal opportunity protections.