April 12, 2016

This Tuesday’s show is focused on the unfulfilled promise of the Fair Housing Act of 1968 as amended. Each year, April is designated as Fair Housing month in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and the passage of the Fair Housing Act in Congress following his assassination and the nationwide uprisings in Black communities. This year’s theme for Fair Housing Month is “Fair Housing Is Your Right: Use It”.

Although some progress has been made in combatting racial segregation in housing, the complex problems of hyper-segregation in residential housing persists in our nation. Where a family lives is still determinative of so many life opportunities, including access to good schools, jobs, transportation, retail services, and even grocery stores. In state after state and city after city, our neighborhoods are still divided by race, economic class, marital status, color and those with disabilities face immense barriers and lack of accommodations while women are subjected to harassment. In addition, our nation is facing an unprecedented crisis of affordable housing which is forcing people of color from preferred neighborhoods while fueling racialized gentrification. Our show will examine the best strategies for changing this current housing landscape for a more just New America.

Our outstanding guests are the major leaders of today’s fair housing movement including: Shanna L. Smith, President & CEO, National Fair Housing Alliance (NFHA); James Perry, CEO of Winston Salem Urban League and former Executive Director of the Greater New Orleans Fair Housing Action Center; and Keenya Robertson, President & CEO of HOPE, Inc of Miami/Fort Lauderdale and Chair of the NAFHA Board of Directors.

During the show, we will explore the current challenges facing the fight for fair housing. How do we break down the racial, ethnic, economic and other segregative barriers? Many people were shocked to see the impoverished and dilapidated housing crisis in Baltimore during the Freddie Gray Death Uprising but did not know that a major lawsuit had been recently settled to address this crisis arising from US Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD’s) racially discriminatory and segregative policies of the past.

There are 220 fair housing private organizations, agencies and individuals that comprise the organized fair housing movement and bring lawsuits and support policies to enforce the Fair Housing Act. How does this thin blue line make a daily difference in this fight.

We will also address the positive pro-fair housing policies that US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has instituted in recent years under the Obama Administration. What does the 2013 HUD Disparate Impact Rule mean for the future fight against housing discrimination? What new tools in the fight against housing discrimination does the 2015 HUD Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing Rule provide? How will advocates use the 2015, Supreme Court decision in Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs, et al. Inclusive Communities Project, Inc., et al., to promote racially integrative housing?

More and more the docket of cases at HUD have included challenges to housing developments and complexes and their refusal to provide accommodations for people with disabilities. How does the fair housing movement educate the public and promote more housing opportunities for people with disabilities? What can be done to address discrimination and problems in federal and state public housing? Also, how can we address inner city gentrification? How do we advance affordable housing?

This show will discuss ways our listeners can join the movement for fair housing, accessible housing and affordable housing.

For more information on Fair Housing Month visit: www.nationalfairhousing.org and HUD.gov.

Be sure to spread the word about this timely show!

This week’s guests:

Keenya Robertson

Keenya Robertson has dedicated her professional career to advocating for fair housing and other civil rights. She is President & CEO of Housing Opportunities Project […]

James Perry

James Perry is president and CEO of the Winston-Salem Urban League. Perry manages a 200 person team across the state of North Carolina, advocating for […]

Shanna L. Smith

  Shanna L. Smith has been the President/CEO of the National Fair Housing Alliance (NFHA) for 26 years. She was previously the executive director of […]