Our Work

Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing

Update: July 2021

On June 10, 2021, HUD published an interim final rule to revoke the 2020 Preserving Community and Neighborhood Choice (PCNC) rule and reinstate the Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH) definitions and certification requirements from the 2015 AFFH rule. Unlike the PCNC rule, the 2015 rule defined AFFH in a manner consistent with Congressional intent, agency interpretation, and decades of judicial decisions. This interim rule is an important step toward full restoration of an effective AFFH rule, which HUD will propose in the months ahead. Read NFHA’s July 2021 statement about HUD’s new interim final AFFH rule. Click here for a one pager outlining steps HUD can take to strengthen its interim AFFH rule.

HUD proposed a new rule in January of 2020 that would effectively eliminate AFFH, making housing discrimination easier and entrenching housing segregation

Background

In 1968, when it passed the Fair Housing Act, Congress made a promise to the American people that it would end discrimination in housing based on race, national origin and certain other characteristics, and that it would eliminate racial segregation — which government itself had done so much to create and sustain — and undo the lasting harms it caused. Congress gave HUD the job of carrying out this promise. It made HUD responsible for protecting the rights of individuals seeking homes. It also told HUD to make sure that the cities, counties and states it funds do not discriminate and that they take active steps to tackle segregation. This important protection is known as Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH). HUD failed to do this job until 2015, when it adopted the first effective AFFH regulation.

Explore our additional AFFH resources, press releases, and tools.

Resources

In the latest of the Trump administration’s attacks on fair housing, HUD proposed a new rule in January of 2020 that would effectively eliminate AFFH, making housing discrimination easier and entrenching housing segregation. The proposed rule has since received widespread opposition from a wide array of civil rights advocates, legal experts, business groups and private citizens throughout the country. More than 19,500 individuals and organizations submitted comments in response to HUD’s proposed rule before the public comment period closed on March 16, 2020. Click here to read NFHA’s comments opposing the proposed rule.

 

Quick Facts

AFFH is a provision of the 1968 Fair Housing Act directing HUD to make sure neither it nor the cities, counties, states, and public housing agencies it funds, discriminate in their programs.

The Fair Housing Act, passed in 1968, seeks to end housing discrimination and promote diverse, inclusive communities by prohibiting discrimination against people seeking to rent or buy a home, obtain a mortgage, or seek housing assistance.

This proposed rule is not a fair housing rule at all. It is a deregulation rule cloaked in affordable housing language masquerading as a fair housing rule. It significantly weakens fair housing compliance, entrenches segregated housing patterns, and continues the status quo.

You can help by telling the Trump administration you oppose HUD’s harmful proposal.

The centrality of housing to people’s opportunities and life chances guarantees that virtually every issue concerning social justice is in some way a fair housing issue.” – George Lipsitz

Despite the Fair Housing Act, marginalized groups are often still excluded from access to quality and fair housing; this limits their access to good jobs, schools, transportation, and more.

AFFH implementation by HUD has been limited. As a result, many violations of the Fair Housing Act continue. View the full timeline.