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Community 2020 Forum

Thirty Years of Fair Housing:
Many Neighborhoods, One America

April 21, 1998

Background Agenda Speakers Transcript


On April 11, 1968, Congress passed the landmark Fair Housing Act, and in so doing declared discrimination in housing illegal. As a result of the Act and its subsequent amendments, we have made great progress in ensuring access to housing for all, without regard to race, color, national origin, gender, disability, families with children, or religious persuasion.

This Community 2020 forum celebrated the 30th Anniversary of the Fair Housing Act. Our speakers looked at the role the Act has played, and continues to play, in ensuring housing choice for millions of Americans. The panelists also looked ahead to the 21st Century to answer the following question: What still remains to be done to realize Martin Luther King, Jr.�s vision of a housing market that is at last free of bigotry and prejudice?

The U. S. Department of Housing and Urban Development investigates complaints of housing discrimination and takes action where the law has been violated. Victims of housing discrimination may file complaints calling HUD�s Housing Discrimination Hotline at 1-800-669-9777. Complaints may also be filed on-line on HUD�s homepage.




Eva M. Plaza
Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity
U. S. Department of Housing and Urban Development


Andrew Cuomo
U. S. Department of Housing and Urban Development


Nancy A. Denton
Professor of Sociology, State University of New York at Albany

Emanuel Cleaver, II
Mayor, Kansas City, Missouri

Martin Luther King, III
President, Southern Christian Leadership Conference

Moderated by Secretary Cuomo


Associate Professor, State University of New York at Albany
Center for Social & Demographic Analysis

Professor Denton�s major research interests are race and residential segregation. She is the author of more than a dozen articles on the topic. With Douglas S. Massey, she co-authored American Apartheid: Segregation and the Making of the Underclass, winner of the 1995 American Sociological Association Distinguished Publication Award and the 1994 Oits Dudley Duncan award of the American Sociological Association. In addition to her research and teaching, Professor Denton has actively communicated the results of her work to the non-academic world by testifying before the House Subcommittee on Housing and Community Development and the U. S. Civil Rights Commission, as well as through numerous speaking engagements on fair housing.

Mayor, Kansas City, Missouri

Emanuel Cleaver, II was first elected to Kansas City�s highest office in 1991. He is the first African American Mayor in the City�s history. He was re-elected to a second term in March, 1995. Diversity and inclusion have been an important component of his administration: Mayor Cleaver has appointed more women and minorities to boards and commissions than any of his predecessors. He also created the Mayor�s Race Relation Task Force which was recognized by the White House as a model for other cities. He continues to support the work of the organization he founded. "Harmony in a World of Difference", and he was credited with "keeping the peace" in Kansas City following the 1992 Los Angeles disturbances.

President, Southern Christian Leadership Conference

Martin Luther King, III has been motivating audiences around the world with his insightful message of hope and responsibility for nearly twenty years. A human rights advocate, community activist and a political leader, Mr. King has been actively involved in significant policy initiatives to maintain fair and equitable treatment of all citizens, both at home and abroad. In 1986, he was elected to political office as an at-large representative of over 700,000 residents of Fulton County, Georgia. In November of 1997, Mr. King was unanimously elected the fourth president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, the organization which Martin Luther King, Jr. co-founded in 1957. Mr. King has devoted much of his adult life to the continuance of his father�s mission through the many programs of the SCLC. He has taken the torch lit by his father and continued the quest for equality and justice for all people.

Transcript (Transcript is no longer available.)

Content Archived: April 15, 2011

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