How do California residents feel about public housing? One indicator of
public opinion are the resluts of a survey reported to the Odum Institute between
the years of 1979 and 1991. The Odum Institute is the third largest archive in the
United States of social science data available in computer readable form.
Reviewing the results of this study can give us an idea of how (or even if) public
opinion changes over time. The survey examined whether adult residents of
California felt that tax money (at the state level) for public housing should be
increased, held the same, or decreased.
The results indicate that the residents of California were generally felt that
the amount of spending should either remain the same or be increased. In most
years that the survey was conducted the percentage of respondents who felt that
the amount should be increased was similar to the percentage of respond! ents
who felt that the amount of should remain the same.
Only one year, 1979,
reflected that the amount of funding should be reduced (however, the percentage
was almost equal to that of those responding that funding should either be
increased or held at the same level). Unfortunately, there is no current data
regarding this survey information.
Opinions Expressed by Individual Communities
An example of how policies have been affected by public opinion regarding
public housing took place in San Diego, California when citizens passed
proposition A in fall of 2002. This proposition authorizes the city of San Diego to
build 5,000 new units of public housing to serve the low- income and elderly
populations (Butler and Lowe, 2003). However, some city officials are concerned
that a social stigma still exists regarding public and low- income housing. These
city officials may be right. An article written regarding the recent...