The COVID-19 pandemic caused financial hardship on millions of people. As people return to work and our economy begins to expand, the community development field — including the financial, government, philanthropic, and nonprofit sectors — is thinking about what that recovery looks like and how to include as many people as possible.

The Federal Reserve Community Development Research Seminar Series focused on a recovery that is inclusive. Each seminar in the series presented research illuminating an issue critical to our economy, and presenters discussed how the community development field can use these findings to support a recovery that benefits everyone. The final research seminar focused on the impact of the pandemic on housing instability.

Millions of renters accrued billions of dollars in rental debt because of lost income and jobs during the pandemic. The federal government responded by allocating substantial funding for rental assistance, which was provided to states and their local agencies to manage. In this session, we explored the research behind rental debt and discussed some of the lessons learned from the design and implementation of relief policies and programs. We also evaluated some long-term solutions for increasing rental housing security. 

About the Series

The Federal Reserve Community Development Research Seminar Series is a forum for exploring the intersection of research, policy, and practice in the community development field. The series expands access to high-quality research that informs stakeholders who are working to support low- and moderate-income communities and communities of color.