Wilder School Recipients of VCU COVID-19 Rapid Research Funding Opportunity
By Briana Williams
May 5, 2020
Wilder School faculty members and RVA Eviction Lab co-directors, Kathryn Howell, Ph.D. and Ben Teresa, Ph.D. as well as Elsie Harper-Anderson, Ph.D., director of the Wilder School’s Ph.D. program in public policy and administration are among those selected as initial recipients to receive funding under the a VCU COVID-19 Rapid Research Funding Opportunity with support from the Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation and the Wright Center for Clinical and Translational Research.
Nearly 70 faculty members applied for the support, aimed at encouraging researchers across a broad range of subjects to quickly expand their work to address and diminish the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the health system and our community.
Howell and Teresa's reserach proposal was entitled, “Data for Prevention of Eviction and Proactive Engagement with Tenants and Landlords."
"The shut-down of low-skilled jobs employers the Commonwealth, as well as the inability for many low- and moderate-income households to work from home will mean that many of these households will miss rent payments over the next several months," said Howell.
"While Governor Northam closed court proceedings and Mayor Stoney stopped the Sheriff’s office from carrying out evictions, these measures merely delay late notices and do nothing to address the cascading fees that will make it difficult for low-income families to regain stability after the shut-down is lifted. This project expands on existing work in the RVA Eviction Lab to collect and analyze data that can be used to provide targeted outreach and education, hold landlords accountable and support communities in collective decision-making with a goal of supporting housing stability both during and after the immediate crisis of Covid-19."
Harper-Anderson's research proposal was entitled, “An Analysis of the Economic Impact of COVID-19 and the C.A.R.E.S. Act on African-American Workers and Businesses in Virginia.”
"The COVID-19 global pandemic has inflicted unprecedented health and economic impacts across the globe. Early evidence suggests that the COVID-19 pandemic is having a disproportionately negative health and economic impact of African American workers, businesses and communities," said Harper-Anderson.
"Historically, legislation designed to jumpstart economic recovery has not benefitted African Americans as much as their white counterparts. It is critical to examine the CARES Act to understand whether there are biases and inequality built into the policymaking process at the federal level, and how implementation here in Virginia may be further exacerbating the inequities."
To date, 20 proposals have been selected, nearing $200,000 in funding. Considering the many outstanding proposals received, a recent decision has been made to increase the overall funding to a total of $300,000. See the full list of the first 20 recipients of the VCU COVID-19 Rapid Research Funding.