Source: United States House of Representatives – Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur (OH-09)
Funds will be used to strengthen efforts to prevent and eliminate housing discrimination in Toledo
Washington, D.C. — Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur (OH-09), senior Member of the House Appropriations Committee, today announced $425,000 in federal funds for The Fair Housing Center in Toledo to strengthen its work to prevent and eliminate housing discrimination. The funds were allocated through the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Fair Housing Initiatives Program (FHIP), which funds fair housing organizations and other nonprofits that assist individuals who believe that they have been victims of housing discrimination.
Of the $425,000, $300,000 will be used to open a minimum of 80 new complaint-based and systemic housing discrimination cases, while assisting over 600 complainants, and providing over 800 referrals to other agencies; conduct over 24 case review meetings; coordinate, execute, and evaluate a minimum of 48 tests; recruit and train new testers; conduct a minimum of two refresher trainings for veteran testers; conduct onsite accessibility visits/audits; resolve a minimum of 25 housing discrimination complaints and other alleged violations of fair housing laws; and conduct various enforcement related and educational and outreach activities. The remaining $125,000 will be used to conduct several outreach events, including producing and distributing an educational video that will illustrate the impact of Zip Code on life outcomes. Upon completion, the organization will host a premier featuring a screening and panel discussion to raise awareness of the connection between place and opportunity. The organization will also use advertisements to educate the public and housing professionals about fair housing rights and responsibilities, and develop new printed material and a webinar to educate the public about fair housing rights for people with disabilities.
“I am so grateful for the important work The Fair Housing Center carries out on a daily basis to prevent and eliminate housing discrimination in our community,” said Rep. Kaptur. “Discriminatory housing practices continue to be a barrier for many who seek housing. Thankfully, The Fair Housing Center has been there to educate housing providers, provide resources to individuals who’ve faced housing discrimination, and hold bad actors accountable when necessary. At a time of immense economic and social upheaval related to the global coronavirus pandemic, the work of the Fair Housing Center is as important as ever. Thank you to the Fair Housing Center for their unwavering dedication and service to the Toledo community.”
“The Fair Housing Center is grateful that HUD announced these awards in the midst of a national health crisis so that we can continue providing vital resources to our community,” said Marie Flannery, President and CEO of The Fair Housing Center. “Now more than ever, it is essential that all people are able to access safe and stable housing, free from discrimination and other barriers. We appreciate the support of Congresswoman Kaptur and other leaders in Congress who have fought to preserve this grant program, which has served as a critical funding source for us and many other fair housing organizations across the country. The funding provided through these grants allows us to continue our work addressing and preventing discriminatory practices, in order to create more inclusive, vibrant neighborhoods of opportunity for all.”
Fair housing organizations and other non-profits that receive funding through the Fair Housing Initiatives Program (FHIP), such as The Fair Housing Center, assist people who believe they have been victims of housing discrimination.
FHIP organizations partner with HUD to help people identify government agencies that handle complaints of housing discrimination. They also conduct preliminary investigation of claims, including sending “testers” to properties suspected of practicing housing discrimination. Testers are minorities and whites with the same financial qualifications who evaluate whether housing providers treat equally-qualified people differently.
In addition to funding organizations that provide direct assistance to individuals who feel they have been discriminated against while attempting to purchase or rent housing, FHIP also has initiatives that promote fair housing laws and equal housing opportunity awareness.