An extensive study has found that as many as 79 percent of Americans, regardless of their background and political affiliation, are very pessimistic when it comes to social and economic mobility. The study conducted by the MacArthur Foundation found that the vast majority of American citizens believe it is much easier to fall out of the middle class than to rise to it.
The study encompassed over 1,000 adults and took two weeks to gather the data. Respondents were allowed to define affordability. Hart Research Associates were commissioned by the MacArthur Foundation to finalize the survey. The MacArthur Foundation is among the biggest private foundations in the United States in charge of providing research grants. The organization mostly finances liberal causes.
The study has the goal of pressuring the authorities to push housing reforms and open the path towards more affordable housing. According to the President of MacArthur, Julie Stasch, the reports should be a wake-up call as countless people are facing foreclosures across the nation. We have seen housing prices going sky-high over the last few years while the level of income remained at the same level. As an example, the minimum wage has stood at USD 7.25 per hour since 2009.
More than half of Americans had to sacrifice themselves financially in order to afford housing, with sacrifices ranging from no longer saving for retirement to working two jobs.
Photo attribution: Nick Anfinsen