(312) 353-6236 ext. 2666
January 12, 2004
BUSH ADMINISTRATION AWARDS $17.6 MILLION IN FAIR HOUSING
GRANTS TO CONTINUE FIGHT AGAINST HOUSING BIAS
Nine Groups in Chicago, Forest Park, Homewood, Wheaton and Winnetka Receive $1,341,843
CHICAGO - The Department of Housing and Urban Development announced
today it has awarded $17.6 million in grants to fair housing groups
in 39 states and the District of Columbia as part of the Bush Administration's
to curb housing discrimination. In Illinois, funds are awarded to Access Living of Metropolitan Chicago, Chicago Lawyers' Committee, Latinos United (Chicago), Leadership Council for Metropolitan Open Communities (Chicago), Chicago Homeowners, Progress Center for Independent Living (Forest Park), South Suburban Housing Center (Homewood), HOPE Fair Housing Center (Wheaton) and Interfaith Housing Center of the Northern Suburbs
"Today's announcement is another step toward ensuring that Americans have equal access to safe and affordable housing," said HUD Acting Secretary Alphonso Jackson. "We will not allow discrimination to stop families across this nation from living in any home, apartment or neighborhood they can afford."
The grants were awarded today by HUD's Fair Housing Initiatives
Program to groups that will use the funds to investigate allegations
of housing discrimination, educate the public and housing industry
discrimination laws, and work to promote fair housing.
"Until every door that today stands closed has been opened, until
all families live in the homes of their dreams, in
the neighborhoods of their choice, we must work to ensure that all housing is fair housing," said Joseph P. Galvan, HUD Regional Director for the Midwest (Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio and Wisconsin).
Illinois recipients include:
Access Living of Metropolitan Chicago - $206,489.79 (PEI)
Access Living of Metropolitan Chicago's 18-month Fair Housing Enforcement Project combines enforcement and networking, as well as the processing of allegations of discrimination concerning refusal to rent, noncompliance with access design requirements, and denial of requests for reasonable accommodations and modifications. Enforcement activities will cover the Chicago metropolitan area, Illinois' most populous and racially diverse region. Screening, investigations (including testing), and filing of administrative complaints to HUD and other agencies, when
appropriate, will entail some of the services offered under this project. While strengthening ties with faith-based community groups, the project will serve all protected classes.
Chicago Lawyers' Committee - $206,222.79 (PEI)
The Chicago Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights (CLCCR) has extensive experience in fair housing issues, having litigated hundreds of complaints since 1969, including class action and law reform cases. Fair housing groups throughout the Chicago metropolitan area access the CLCCR's free, expert legal services through, for example, outreach workshops to community-based organizations and municipalities; tester recruitment from five institutions serving minorities; and sales, lending and rental testing. One of several partners, the Interfaith Housing Center of
the Northern Suburbs, a faith-based organization, will accept complaints that CLCCR will investigate and
appropriately represent, either during the HUD administrative process or in separate civil lawsuits. Latinos and
African Americans comprise the primary groups that CLCCR and additional partners such as the HOPE Fair Housing Center and the Woodstock Institute will assist under this one-year project.
Chicago - Latinos United - $79,220.98 (EOI-G)
Latinos United is a nonprofit, Chicago metro area housing advocacy and fair housing organization with this mission:
to provide and advocate for equitable participation and access in housing and other priority areas for Latinos in the Chicago metropolitan region by effecting change in public and private polices and practices. Latinos United will
provide bilingual fair housing workshops and educational forums targeted to the Chicago Hispanic community.
Chicago - Leadership Council for Metropolitan Open Communities
- $206,489.79 (PEI)
For 18 months, the Leadership Council for Metropolitan Open Communities (LCMOC) will increase fair housing compliance and enforcement in the Chicago area. As the oldest and most comprehensive fair housing organization
in the nation, LCMOC's efforts will continue, consisting of intake, investigation, legal representation, and systemic testing and investigations to pursue legal remedies. All protected classes, particularly the disabled and new
immigrant groups will benefit from the Immigrants Fair Housing Roundtable, a forum for coordinating efforts related
to the rights and responsibilities of immigrants and their landlords. Staff, volunteer, and board member training are
an integral component of this initiative.
Chicago Homeowners - $79,712 (EOI-G)
The Chicago Homeowners will partner with Chicago Housing Authority (CHA), CHAC, Inc. and the John Marshall Law Center's Fair Housing Clinic to provide fair housing education and legal counseling that will lead to increased referrals to HUD and the city of Chicago's Commission on Human Relations. Chicago Homeowners will provide 36 education workshops in the Austin Community to a minimum of 720 community residents and disseminate educational materials
to over 3,000 residents that will result in at least 35 fair housing complaints to HUD. By working collaboratively with community partners, the program will reach a broader number of residents from the targeted populations.
Forest Park - Progress Center for Independent Living - $100,000
A three-member consortium, the Progress Center For Independent Living (PCIL), The Lake County Center For Independent Living, and The DuPage Center For Independent Living will expand its fair housing services to
immigrants, Latino groups, the elderly, and other protected classes in suburban Cook, Lake and DuPage Counties.
This 1-year initiative will continue to establish a foundation of knowledge needed to mobilize hundreds of people
with disabilities in suburban Cook, Lake and DuPage Counties to engage in fair housing activities and employ their
fair housing rights. Some of the activities will include trainings for approximately 480 citizens and housing providers, such as bankers, developers, and local governments; media blitzes in English and Spanish; and telephone and email outreach to advance product development and service delivery.
Homewood - South Suburban Housing Center - $177,239.79 (PEI)
South Suburban Housing Center (SSHC) has served more than 100 municipalities in the south Chicago metropolitan region over the last 28 years. Encompassing southern Cook, Will, and Kankakee counties, this 1-year grant will allow SSHC to conduct an array of fair housing investigation techniques to monitor real estate sales, new construction, mortgage lending, homeowners insurance, real estate appraisals, and design accessibility for the disabled. African-Americans, Latinos, the disabled, and all other protected groups will receive special attention under this grant.
SSHC's work will heighten awareness about predatory lending; expand testing programs, including conducting fair housing tests; and increase outreach and enforcement through complaint intakes, investigations, monitoring, and mediation assistance
Wheaton - HOPE Fair Housing Center - $206,468.04 (PEI)
HOPE Fair Housing Center, over the next year, will assist Latinos, African Americans, the disabled, and new
immigrant families file fair housing complaints. The project will cover several counties, including DuPage, Kane, McHenry, Western Cook County, and 26 rural counties. HOPE's successes in the City of Elgin's landmark settlement, and the HUD complaints/litigation against the City of West Chicago demand continued efforts, which this funding
will support. HOPE will conduct tests and investigations to uncover such practices as invasive searches, predatory lending, and discrimination against the disabled. HOPE partners with more than seven agencies, including public entities; faith-based organizations; and apartment referral, social service, and legal assistance agencies.
Winnetka - Interfaith Housing Center of the Northern Suburbs
- $80,000 (EOI-G)
The Interfaith Housing Center of the Northern Suburbs will provide a broad-based and full service fair housing education projects for the sixteen-community service area of northern Cook and southern Lake Counties bordering Chicago, Illinois. Interfaith Housing Center proposes to recruit and train at least 100 local residents in 10 suburbs
to become "Fair Housing Advocates". These educated, organized advocates will distribute fair housing materials in English, Spanish, Polish, Russian, Arabic, Chinese, and Korean to provide policies and programs that further fair housing. The ultimate goal is to ensure that all people have the same opportunities to apply for and obtain housing
in the northern suburbs of Chicago.
Three types of grants were awarded to groups in 96 cities:
- Private Enforcement Initiative (PEI) grants - About $10.2 million
was awarded to assist private,
tax-exempt fair housing enforcement organizations in the investigation and enforcement of alleged
violations of the Fair Housing Act and State and local fair housing laws.
- Education and Outreach Initiative (EOI) grants - About $5.3
million was allocated to groups to
educate the public about the rights and obligations under federal, state and local fair housing laws.
Nearly $800,000 went to ten groups that focus on the needs of persons with disabilities.
- Fair Housing Organizations Initiative (FHOI) grants - About
$2.1 million was awarded for projects
that serve rural and immigrant populations in underserved areas or where there currently is no existing
fair housing organization.
In 2002, HUD released a study titled Discrimination in Metropolitan
Housing Markets: Phase I, which documented
that despite a decline during the last decade, housing discrimination still exists at unacceptable levels. Last year, HUD, in partnership with The Advertising Council and the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights Education Fund, recently released an award-winning, edgy multimedia campaign designed to fight housing discrimination by showing the many faces of those persons protected by the nation's 35-year-old Fair Housing Act.
HUD received applications from 215 groups seeking grants for the
fiscal year 2003 assistance. Grants were awarded
to 121 projects in the following locations:
|District of Columbia||$466,142||New Mexico||$179,840|
For other states, individual project summaries by city and state are on HUD's website.
Since the program's inception in 1989, nearly $226 million has been awarded to some 1070 organizations. Twenty-eight organizations selected for this year's awards are first-time applicants.
HUD is the nation's housing agency committed to increasing homeownership,
particularly among minorities; creating affordable housing opportunities
for low-income Americans; and supporting the homeless, elderly,
people with disabilities and people living with AIDS. The Department
also promotes economic and community development as
well as enforces the nation's fair housing laws. More information about HUD and its programs is available on the Internet and espanol.hud.gov.