The economic death of the Orlando family explained

One thing many of our Orlando leaders don’t understand as they continue to protect their special interests in the real estate and tourism industry is this.

Families are dying in our community. Everyday.

And its a sad process. I’ll explain it to you today.

The status quo: The average family here can be of any race (although numbers are higher in Black and Hispanic communities), two parents likely working in tourism or construction that are underpaid, two kids attending public school. They are already paying above the recommended 30% for rent because our elected officials allow Orlando real estate to raise the rent as much as they like at one time.

Phase 1: A financial emergency: Maybe the car breaks down. Maybe a child gets sick. Maybe the rent goes up again. This family that was already struggling has to work even harder.

Phase 2: Increased stress and arguing: Parents have to work more. This means less time with the kids, who may fall behind in school. The parents may also began to experience more stress under the financial strain and began fighting.

Phase 3: Evictions: Because Orlando real estate continues raising the rent from contract to contract, and because of an unreasonable cost of living in Orlando, families may be forced to leave their homes.

Phase 4: Hotel rooms, missed school and food deserts: The family, in a last effort to remain in their community may move into an extended stay. But their commute is likely worse and the kids may have to change school or miss school altogether. They’re development stops and they fall behind. The nutrition of the family may suffer as grocery costs continue to rise. Those kids may go to be hungry.

Phase 5: The death of a family: Ultimately, the family may have to live separately. The children may have to move in with other family members. Spouses will take jobs elsewhere and drift apart. Divorce is a very real possibility. The children grow up in a broken home.

All because Orlando real estate keeps increasing the rent, and politicians from all sides choose to protect developers and lobbyists instead of families.

This happens everyday. Our leaders could do something. They could implement more tenant protections. They could advocate for diversifying lucrative tourism income to the area.

But they choose not to.

And that is how an Orlando family dies.

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