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December/January 2020Vol. 20, No. 10Families Facing Eviction and Housing Challenges

In the book Evicted, sociologist Matthew Desmond follows eight families in Milwaukee as they face housing challenges and eviction. It explores poverty and economic exploitation as well as ideas for solving this issue for families across the country. When asked why he wrote this book, Mr. Desmond responded, "I used to think eviction and homelessness were the result of poverty. But I came to recognize that eviction is a cause, not just a condition, of poverty in America. The lack of affordable housing is driving families to financial ruin and is one of the most important drivers of inequality in the nation today." As he described the process of writing the book, he recounted, "It shook me to my core. I saw mothers trying to decide between feeding their children and paying the rent. I saw children so used to being batted around from one place to the next that they gave off no emotion during an eviction: no tears, no running to grab a favorite possession, nothing." This book may provide insight for child welfare and related professionals about the housing issues being faced by their clients.

To learn more about Evicted, visit