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One Book, One Community

Shared Experiences Draw People Together. Share a Book. Share an Experience.

Shared experiences draw people together. That is why we are continuing the One Book, One Community (OBOC) program for its 10th year. Everyone in the school is invited to join together in reading and discussing Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City by Matthew Desmond.

Selecting this Year’s Book: From the Dean

"Evicted by Matthew Desmond describes the plight of poor families who, for want of a few dollars, are forced to move from their homes, apartments, or trailers. An ethnographer, Desmond shares the intimate vicissitudes of his subject / friends as they struggle to make ends meet while negotiating a bewildering system of slumlords, public agencies, law enforcement, and courts, a system that seems almost designed to reinforce a downward spiral of poverty. The consequences of eviction are especially felt by mothers with young children, whose development is jeopardized by substandard housing, low quality neighborhoods, and poor nutrition. 

"Social factors are well known to be paramount determinants of health and well-being, and Evicted heartbreakingly illuminates how poverty and lack of housing affect families and communities. America’s health compares poorly to other economically developed counties. Everyone interested in improving public health should read Evicted to better understand poverty, housing, and health.”

The book has been a New York Times best seller, won a Pulitzer Prize, and was on Bill Gates’s summer reading list in 2017

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Our Research and Partnerships

Dara Mendez, Social Context and Pregnancy Outcomes

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With research interests that explore the role of social context in determining outcomes related to pregnancy, birth, and women's health, EPI's MENDEZ applies frameworks and approaches focused on the social determinants of health equity and health disparities. She employs novel methods to measure and understand neighborhood environments, various forms of racism, and social stress.   

Mary Hawk, Co-Founder of Open Door Pittsburgh

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HAWK (BCHS '12) is a founding member of this local housing program that uses harm reduction and housing-first approaches to engage marginalized people living with HIV/AIDS in clinical care. Hawk published the first study to use HIV viral load to measure the impact of the housing-first model of care on homeless people living with HIV/AIDS and she was awarded the Catherine Cartier Ulrich Memorial Award for Public Health Service to the Undeserved w... 

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Read-Along Program

Alumni, families, and friends are invited to sign up below and read along with the school’s students and faculty by participating in the second read-along program. Read Evicted and participate in live and virtual events and discussions. Read more...

WHERE TO GET THE BOOK

Get 10% off at the University Store on Fifth (with Pitt ID).

Also available at Pitt's Hillman LibraryFalk Library (HSLS), and the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh

Questions?

With questions about OBOC, or to suggest an event, contact Kimmy Rehak, educational programs specialist.

facebook icon obocLike OBOC on Facebook for news, tools, discussions and more. 

In The News

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As affordable housing crisis grows, HUD sits on the sidelines 

As affordable housing crisis grows, HUD sits on the sidelines

NEW YORK TIMES - The country is in the grips of an escalating housing affordability crisis. Millions of low-income Americans are paying 70 percent or more of their incomes for shelter, while rents continue to rise and construction of affordable rental apartments lags far behind the need. Ben Carson... (08/06/2018)
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Pittsburgh task force takes on issue of landlords turning away renters with convictions 

Pittsburgh task force takes on issue of landlords turning away renters with convictions

PUBLIC SOURCE - As housing prices and rents rise in the Pittsburgh region, residents with convictions are often denied housing they can afford. Discrimination against people who have been incarcerated or have any marks on their rap sheet is one of several barriers the region’s fair housing task for... (08/06/2018)
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Why Boston Medical Center is investing in housing 

Why Boston Medical Center is investing in housing

WBUR - "It makes me feel comfortable about myself," says Chuck Gyukeri, "that I'm able to come in and out of my own home. And I’m getting my health issues together. "Gyukeri's apartment is in one of four brownstones on Waldeck Street — 35 units that came close to losing their affordable status.  (08/06/2018)
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The state of the nation's housing 2018 

The state of the nation's housing 2018

HOW HOUSING MATTERS - The national homeownership rate rose in 2017 for the first time in 13 years. Other housing trends include enduring constraints on the single-family market, racial disparities in neighborhood poverty levels, lagging household growth, trade-offs between housing, etc.  (08/06/2018)
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Study: 40 percent of Pa. households struggle to make ends meet 

Study: 40 percent of Pa. households struggle to make ends meet

PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE - According to a United Way study, more than 40 percent of Pennsylvania households can’t afford basic household necessities. While 12.3 percent fit the government’s definition of poverty, an additional 29.4 percent fall into the ALICE category: people who clear the poverty l... (08/06/2018)
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Why eviction rates in Hampton Roads are among the worst in the United States 

Why eviction rates in Hampton Roads are among the worst in the United States

THE VIRGINIAN-PILOT - Hampton Roads is among the worst areas in the nation for evictions of rental tenants according to new data on court-ordered evictions. All of the region’s cities in 2016 saw judges order tenants out of their homes at least three times the average national rate.  (08/06/2018)
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First-ever evictions database shows: 'We're in the middle of a housing crisis' 

First-ever evictions database shows: 'We're in the middle of a housing crisis'

NPR - For many poor families in America, eviction is a real and ongoing threat. Sociologist Matthew Desmond, author of this year's One Book, One Community selection, estimates that 2.3 million evictions were filed in the U.S. in 2016 — a rate of four every minute. "Eviction isn't just a condition o... (08/06/2018)
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Pittsburgh's eviction rates are falling, but the data is likely flawed 

Pittsburgh's eviction rates are falling, but the data is likely flawed

WESA-FM - The rate of Pittsburgh renters facing eviction judgments is lower than state and national averages. One in 100 Pittsburgh renters were subject to evictions but Jay Dworin, executive director of Pittsburgh's Fair Housing Partnership, said that’s not the full picture of evictions. Tenants o... (08/06/2018)
© 2018 by University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health

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