September 25, 2013
HUD AWARDS $643,795 TO ALABAMA TO FIGHT HOUSING DISCRIMINATION
BIRMINGHAM, AL - The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) today awarded $324,000 to Central Alabama Fair housing Center, in Montgomery, and $319,795 to Mobile Fair Housing Center in an effort to reduce housing discrimination. This funding is part of $38.3 million HUD awarded today to 95 fair housing organizations and other non-profit agencies in 38 states.
Funded through HUD's Fair Housing Initiatives Program (FHIP), these grants will help enforce the Fair Housing Act through investigation and testing of alleged discriminatory practices. In addition, the funds will educate housing providers, local governments and potential victims of housing discrimination about their rights and responsibilities under the Fair Housing Act.
"Ending housing discrimination requires that we support the law of the land and protect the housing rights of individuals and families who would be denied those rights," stated HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan. "Ensuring and promoting Fair Housing practices lies at the core of HUD's mission and these grants enable community groups all over the nation to help families who are denied equal access to housing."
Ed Jennings, Jr., the HUD Southeast Regional Administrator, added: "No one should be denied the opportunity to live where they want because of how they look, their faith, whether they have children or because they have a disability. These grants will help us continue our efforts to educate the public and housing industry about their housing rights and responsibilities."
The Mobile Fair Housing Center will use its grant to conduct fair housing investigative and enforcement activities. Investigative activities will include recruiting and training testers as well as conducting testing and site assessments; and complaint intake, processing, referral, and counseling. Enforcement activities will include workshops, outreach for accessibility design and construction and mortgage and predatory lending; compliance audits; referral of enforcement proposals; and counseling activities for underserved victims of rental discrimination.
The Central Alabama Fair Housing Center will use its grant to continue full service fair housing activities in Montgomery, Selma, and 29 counties in Central Alabama. Activities will include: challenging racial steering and other discriminatory housing practices; combating discrimination in the west Alabama "Black Belt;" expanding outreach and enforcement actions to combat escalating discrimination against Latino residents after passage of HB 56; and breaking down barriers for people with disabilities.
HUD's mission is to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes for all. HUD is working to strengthen the housing market to bolster the economy and protect consumers; meet the need for quality affordable rental homes: utilize housing as a platform for improving quality of life; build inclusive and sustainable communities free from discrimination; and transform the way HUD does business. More information about HUD and its programs is available on the Internet at www.hud.gov and espanol.hud.gov. You can also follow HUD on Twitter at @HUDnews or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/HUD, or sign up for news alerts on HUD's News Listserv