UCLA study reveals Asian Americans have the lowest rate of rental assistance

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UCLA study found that Asian Americans had the lowest rate of rental assistance in California.

The study analyzed data from the Census Bureau data and the California Emergency Rental Assistance Program, identifying disparities in the rates of Asian Americans who applied for and received rent relief.

The study identifies that in addition to Asian Americans, Black and Latino Americans struggled with their rent payments during the COVID-19 pandemic. 8 percent of White Americans report being behind on rent compared to 18 percent of Asian and Black Americans, and 17 percent of Latino Americans, according to The Hill.

Asian Americans are not only less likely to apply for rental aid but are also less likely to receive it. Asian Americans had the lowest rate of rental assistance, according to NBC News.

Only 25 percent of Asian American renters applied for aid compared to 48 percent of white renters. And, only 11 percent of Asian renters received government aid compared to 21 percent of White renters, according to NBC News.

The study’s lead author Paul M. Ong states that language barriers, such as limited English proficiency, and outreach are key obstacles to obtaining rental assistance.

“It’s clearly a problem in terms of accessing the information, being knowledgeable and working your way through the application process. Although some public agencies do try to provide multilingual access, they’re usually not implemented very effectively,” Ong told NBC News

According to Ong, immigration status plays a role as well — immigrants who are not yet citizens fear that by participating in government programs, they become identified as a “public charge” and jeopardize their immigration status.

One solution suggested by the study is a grassroots approach that partners with familiar community organizations to reach out to affected households, according to The Hill.

Language and barriers cultural barriers have similarly affected Asian American businesses applying for aid as well, according to CNBC.

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