Green’s Housing Fairness Act advances in Congress, taking one step forward to protect those who are treated unfairly, especially disabled persons and veterans
Washington (DC) – July 29, 2010 – (RealEstateRama) — Yesterday, Congressman Al Green’s (TX-09) “Veterans, Women, Families with Children, and Persons with Disabilities Housing Fairness Act of 2010” (H.R. 476) moved forward in Congress after being approved in a mark up session held by the House Committee on Financial Services. The bill has now been favorably approved and reported out of Committee.
During today’s mark up session, Congressman Al Green noted that the bill, which has 68 cosponsors, is bipartisan and underlined “it aims to provide the necessary enforcement to guarantee equal opportunities and prosecute housing discrimination, as well as to be a deterrent for this kind of behavior.”
The majority of housing discrimination cases reported to the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) involve disabled persons, people of color, and families with children or single parents and veterans. According to the National Fair Housing Alliance, more than four million violations of fair housing laws go unreported every year and approximately only an average of 30,000 are reported to federal, state or local authorities.
The bill would authorize $15 million annually for HUD to administer a nationwide testing program to measure patterns of adverse treatment based on race, color, religion, sex, familial status, disability or national origin in rentals, real estate sales, and lending practices.
It would also establish a $5 million competitive matching grant program for private non-profit organizations to examine the causes of housing discrimination and segregation, as well as their effects on education, poverty and economic development.
Furthermore, it would authorize annual funding for the Fair Housing Initiatives Program at $42.5 million through FY 2015, which is the current level appropriated in FY 2010. This funding would support enforcement, education and outreach by private, non-profit fair housing centers.
The Housing Fairness Act is endorsed by the following organizations: American Civil Liberties Union, American Legion, Greenlining Institute, Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, League of United Latin American Citizens, NAACP, National Coalition for Asian Pacific, American Community Development, National Community Reinvestment Coalition, National Council of La Raza, National Fair Housing Alliance, and National Urban League.
Alvaro ‘Al’ Ortiz
Congressman Al Green, 9th District-Texas
United States House of Representatives
3003 South Loop West, Suite 460
Houston, TX 77054
Office Phone: 713-383-9321
Cellular Phone: 202-527-1109
Email: Alvaro.Ortiz (at) mail.house (dot) gov