Public Radio International highlights housing issues in the Rio Grande Valley

Public Radio International reporter (and former TxLIHIS staff member) Alina Simone spent some time in the Rio Grande Valley last month with our staff and our partners at La Unión del Pueblo Entero (LUPE) and buildingcommunityWORKSHOP. The result was two great reports which debuted on PRI’s The World in the past few weeks, broadcast on National Public Radio and the BBC.

The first story focused on LUPE’s Right to Light campaign, the effort by community organizers in the Valley to bring much-needed streetlights to the many colonias without adequate lighting. Simone spoke with colonia residents and organizers who describe the safety concerns and political complications behind the lighting push.

For her second story, Simone visited with some participants in the Disaster Recovery Housing Program, the pioneering way that bcWORKSHOP and Community Development Corporation of Brownsville are changing how Texans are housed after natural disasters. The program helps families move into customizable, locally-built homes within months after disaster strikes, at about half the price and a fraction of the time of the state’s current disaster housing program.