Virtual meeting set for Oct. 6

BINGEN — The second in a series of virtual discussions focused on building awareness of affordable housing and sharing strategies to address this growing challenge throughout the Gorge will be held from noon to 1:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 6. The bi-state event will be hosted by Mid-Columbia Community Action Council (MCCAC), Washington Gorge Action Programs (WAGAP), and Mid-Columbia Housing Authority (MCHA).

“We want to continue the conversation started with our first roundtable held in July,” said Leslie Naramore, WAGAP’s executive director. “The feedback we received prompted us to continue the discussion with a similar format as we work to include more communities in the discussion.”

The group will be keeping these discussions targeted on how lack of affordable housing affects low-income residents, so the focus will remain on those that earn 80 percent or less of the Average Median Income (AMI). Encouraging underrepresented communities in the region to express their voice is also a continuing priority.

The Oct. 6 event will start with an overview from Margaret Salazar, executive director of Oregon Housing and Community Services. Debra Whitefoot, the executive director with Nch’i Wana Housing, will share more impacts on Native families. Representing Comunidades, Ubaldo Hernández, senior organizer with Columbia Riverkeeper, will share more impacts on Latino families.

Panel interviews will include conversations with David Sauter, Klickitat County Commissioner, and Kathy Schwartz, Wasco County Commissioner.

The previous roundtable, held July 14, included presentations from Adria Buchanan, executive director of the Fair Housing Center for Washington, and interviews with Mayor Marla Keethler of the City of White Salmon, and council member Megan Saunders of the City of Hood River. A link to the recording of the first roundtable is available online at www.wagap.org/newsfeed/roundtable-recording.

The roundtable will be presented via Zoom. To participate, go to the RSVP meeting link online at forms.gle/mvWUnzJjUTApY1ZQ9. For any questions, contact Kenny LaPoint at 541-848-1667.