The Case for Fair Housing
Every year, the National Fair Housing Alliance releases a report on trends in fair housing, including the most recent data on reported instances of housing discrimination in America. In this 2017 Fair Housing Trends Report, we make The Case for Fair Housing. To fully outline why fair housing is so imperative, this report covers the history of policies and practices that have made our communities so segregated and why that is such a harmful thing for our nation. It also explains the mechanisms that are in place to combat housing discrimination and dismantle segregation. We then cover the most recent data on fair housing complaints from private fair housing centers, DOJ, HUD and FHAP agencies. Highlights of this data include:
- There were 28,181 reported complaints of housing discrimination in 2016. Of these, private fair housing organizations were responsible for addressing 70 percent, the lion’s share of all housing discrimination complaints nationwide.
- 55 percent of these complaints involved discrimination on the basis of disability, followed by 19.6 percent based on racial discrimination and 8.5 percent based on discrimination against families with kids.
- 91.5 percent of all acts of housing discrimination reported in 2016 occurred during rental transactions.
A few key issues were additionally important in 2016, including (1) fair housing rights in the context of social media platforms and in the shared economy, (2) the need to apply fair housing laws in counteracting the recent surge in hate crimes, harassment, and housing-related hate activity and (3) how the first round of cities and jurisdictions required to implement HUD’s new Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing rule began this process by taking their initial steps in 2016. The report concludes with a number of ways we can better tackle housing discrimination, address segregation, and work toward a more inclusive society.