Oregon Gov. Tina Kotek has rightly announced she will declare a housing state of emergency in Oregon on her first day in office. State lawmakers also have identified the housing crisis as a top priority for the 2023 legislative session.

This is welcome news as too many of our neighbors live in cars or tents due to the lack of affordable housing in our communities. As we work towards long-term solutions by increasing housing supply, and to address the immediate crisis of people living outside, we must take swift and decisive action to prevent even more people being forced to live in cars, tents or shelters. Too many Oregonians are teetering on the edge of homelessness with potentially a few hundred dollars meaning the difference between sleeping under a tarp or under their own roofs.

Katrina Holland is a resident of Northeast Portland and the executive director of JOIN.