The housing crisis in Connecticut affects people in all corners of the state in a wide variety of circumstances. But nowhere is the situation more severe than for low-income workers priced out by a soaring market. There\u2019s a simple lack of supply, even in cities that are nominally affordable. But the problem goes far beyond that. As a Hearst Connecticut Media investigation found , even for people who receive help from the government in finding shelter, the obstacles are daunting, to the point that many people are forced to give up and simply live elsewhere. About 50 percent of the thousands of vouchers awarded by local housing authorities in the state in recent years went unused, the investigation found, a searing indictment of a broken system. What should be a lifeline is instead a ticket to hassle, frustration and rejection. The situation needs to change. But there are many shortfalls that led to this point, meaning a solution will not come easily. Vouchers are issued by local authorities, which usually limit recipients to that community or close neighbors. If there\u2019s nothing available, they\u2019re out of luck. Vouchers do not cover the full rental cost, meaning some people can receive help but still find nothing available in their price range. And the tangle of paperwork and bureaucracy required by both tenants and landlords is daunting, with little if any assistance available to help people wade through it. It\u2019s not a tenable situation, and it\u2019s only getting worse. Before the pandemic, about two-thirds of vouchers were used. Since 2020, it\u2019s down to about half. That adds up to thousands of unused vouchers around Connecticut, which translates to thousands of people and families unable to find homes. These aren\u2019t just statistics, they\u2019re people. They\u2019re neighbors, coworkers, family members, people who contribute meaningfully to their communities and society at large. We can\u2019t survive as a state if we expect everyone to afford a detached single-family home on a cul-de-sac. The lack of housing options in Connecticut is devastating to our future. There are solutions, but they require action from a variety of sources. Our system of local control puts the onus on town governments to provide answers, but too many are eager to look the other way. For starters, the value of the federally funded vouchers needs to increase. It does no one any good if voucher recipients still find rentals unaffordable. Housing authorities should remove restrictions on where in the state people can use them. Help must be offered to help people navigate the system. Simply letting people loose and hoping it works out is inadequate at best. Beyond that, Connecticut simply must build more housing. The rental market is so tight because of a limited supply. Build more, and more people will be able to find homes. That helps voucher holders, but it helps everyone. The state economy grows. More people move in, and job opportunities increase. Everyone wins. That will require state action. Leaving it up to individual municipalities is a recipe for doing nothing. The General Assembly and the newly reelected governor must make this a priority.