Subject: Fair Housing

  • Lawn Sign Liberalism

    If you live anywhere with a substantial resistance to the current administration's attacks on immigrants, you may have seen these lawn/window signs–they say, in Spanish, English, and Arabic, “No matter where you are from, we’re glad you’re our neighbor.” (There’s…

  • New Bills Would Enforce Ignorance on State of Housing Opportunity

    The 115th Congress has just gotten underway and already several of its members have launched an attack on some fundamental American values: the belief that choices about where to live should not be limited by the color of one's skin…

  • Houston, It’s Time to Stop Accommodating Segregation

    Overall, Houston, Texas, is one of the most statistically diverse cities in the country. But at the neighborhood level, it is severely racially segregated. This is no accident. Segregation in our nation’s fourth-largest city, the Southern city with the largest…

  • Fair Housing is NOT War on the Suburbs

    The Obama administration’s revised Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH) rule has recently come under fire—again—by the new administration. Attacks on the rule have been debated here on Rooflines, but what is lost in this debate is that AFFH has been…

  • No Going Back to Segregation After Landmark Texas Fair Housing Case

    As a Texas houser and fair housing advocate, I have been an anxious and interested outside observer of the long-running fair housing lawsuit in my state. The U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs v.…

  • Give Housing Vouchers Their Full Power

    A proposed rule change for the use of federal Housing Choice Vouchers would greatly improve the chance that housing vouchers will do what they are supposed to do: Provide low income families with a choice in where they want to…

  • The Devils in the Details: Key Issues in Implementing the New AFFH Rule

    For most of the Fair Housing Act’s history, its requirement to “Affirmatively Further Fair Housing” has been largely dormant. With the advent of the new AFFH rules in July 2015, however, there is some promise that this provision might be…

  • Does Screening for Eviction Records Violate the Fair Housing Act?

    We tend to think of the Fair Housing Act as covering access to housing—getting “into” housing. But it also applies to staying in that housing. In other words, it applies to evictions. A landlord may not discriminate when deciding what…

  • Unsafe, Segregated Housing is Never “Fair”

    Concord Homes in Beaumont, Texas, is the archetype of distressed public housing in America: Physically deteriorated, environmentally blighted and built in an era when racial segregation was a public goal and neighborhood quality was not a consideration. The 100-unit family…

  • A Fair Approach to Fair Housing

    When we received Shelterforce’s newsletter a month ago with ‘Section 8 Ghetto’ in the subject line, we were quite dismayed. Our organization, the National Housing Trust, is dedicated to preserving existing affordable housing, especially subsidized housing like project-based Section 8.…

  • Suing the Suburbs

    Fights against the displacement caused by rapid gentrification tend to focus on the gentrifying neighborhoods themselves. But some housing advocates in the Bay Area are wondering if the idea of looking at the regional housing market could apply to their…

  • Segregation Conversation Goes National

    The conversation about balancing placed-based revitalization and expanding access to high-opportunity areas has been edging onto the national radar recently, in the wake of the Supreme Court decision on disparate impact and HUD's release of the affirmatively furthering fair housing…

  • Same-sex Couples Can Love, But Where Can They Live?

    [Note: A version of this aricle originally appeared in Ebony.com in July 2015]   Same-sex couples’ right to marry is now protected, but do they have the right to housing? It is not only possible but also legal under federal…

  • Fair Housing’s Giant Two Steps Forward

    It’s a rare moment when two branches of our federal government take major steps to expand opportunity for all Americans.  But, with relatively little fanfare, that’s what’s happened over the last few weeks in the critical area of housing. First,…

  • A Clear SCOTUS Statement on Disparate Impact and AFFH

    It is rare that the Supreme Court opines simultaneously on two hot issues in community development and fair housing, but in the recent decision on Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs v. Inclusive Communities Project Inc. they did just that.…

  • CA’s Surprisingly Strong Stand in Support of Inclusionary Housing

    Yesterday’s long awaited California Supreme Court decision in the California Building Industry Association v. City of San Jose case is being hailed as a major victory for inclusionary housing, but like most people outside the legal community, I was not…

  • Promising News from the Post-Civil Rights Suburbs

    The passage of the 1968 Fair Housing Act promised greater suburban housing opportunities for people of color in the U.S. Yet, progress has been slow. Over half of African Americans, Latinos, and Asians live in the suburbs, but the typical…

  • Supreme Court Argument Reaffirms the Case for Disparate Impact

    The U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments last week in a very important fair housing case, and the Justices’ comments from the bench have had court watchers buzzing ever since. Here’s my take on what the legal back-and-forth in the…

  • Disparate Impact: A Texan’s Perspective

    It’s important to remember, as Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs v. The Inclusive Communities Project reaches the Supreme Court of the United States later this month, the actual people who bear the brunt of Texas’ history of housing…

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    “Nowhere to Live Safe”: Moving to Peace and Safety

    We all experience stress in our daily lives, whether financial worries or problems at work or at home. Few of us escape some exposure to “adverse childhood experiences.” But many low-income families have to live, day in and day out,…

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