Institute on Disability


The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) provides housing rental assistance to more than 4.5 million low-income households. Using health survey data from the National Health Interview Survey (NHIS) linked to Federal housing administrative data, household food insecurity was assessed among adults receiving housing assistance at the time of their NHIS interview during 2011 and 2012 (n=2,089). Food-insecure households had difficulty at times providing adequate food for all their members due to limited resources. Among NHIS adult respondents receiving HUD assistance, 37.2 percent reported household food insecurity (including low and very low food security), while 19.1 percent experienced very low food security, the more severe range of food insecurity characterized by disrupted eating patterns and reduced food intake. Analyses revealed that adults in the Housing Choice Voucher program were significantly more likely to report household food insecurity than adults in other HUD programs (Public Housing and Multifamily Housing), net of other characteristics. Although housing assistance programs are designed to free financial resources associated with housing cost burden, household food insecurity is still prominent among low-income, HUD-assisted adults.

Publication Date


Journal Title

Economic Research Report No. (ERR-277)


United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), Economic Research Service, Agricultural Economic Reports

Document Type