The Limits of 8

By: Kate Giammarise, Pittsburgh Post Gazette

Published August 2, 2017

When she had to leave her East Liberty apartment last year, Linda Robinson was stressed and upset. She was having difficulty finding a place to live.

She had a Housing Choice Voucher — commonly referred to as a “Section 8” voucher — which helps low-income individuals find an apartment on the private rental market by paying part of their rent every month.

Still, she searched for months.

“One time, I spent $30 on stamps, applying for places. They put you on the waiting list. You can’t get anything immediately,” she recalled.

In the city of Pittsburgh, there are high numbers of voucher holders in East Liberty, Carrick, Sheraden/Esplen, Knoxville and Crawford-Roberts and the Middle Hill, an analysis of data from three local housing authorities by the Post-Gazette found.

The Allegheny County suburbs of Wilkinsburg, McKeesport, McKees Rocks, Penn Hills, Duquesne, Clairton and Swissvale have the highest number of voucher holders, the same analysis — using data from the Allegheny County Housing Authority and McKeesport Housing Authority — found.

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