|HUD No. Region VI: 12-05
Patricia Campbell/Scott Hudman
(817) 978-5974/(713) 992-5206
October 13, 2011
HUD AWARDS THE METROPOLITAN FAIR HOUSING COUNCIL OF OKLAHOMA $324,808 TO COMBAT HOUSING DISCRIMINATION
OKLAHOMA CITY - The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development today awarded $324,808 to the Metropolitan Fair Housing Council of Oklahoma. The grant is to assist people who believe they have been victims of housing discrimination.
Nationally, HUD awarded $28 million. The grants announced today are funded through HUD's Fair Housing Initiatives Program (FHIP) and will be used to investigate allegations of housing discrimination, and work to promote equal housing opportunities.
"The Obama Administration is committed to ending housing discrimination, and these grants enable local fair housing and community organizations all over the nation to help HUD enforce the Fair Housing Act, and make people more aware of their fair housing rights," stated HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan.
HUD Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing & Equal Opportunity, John Trasviña added: "Last year, HUD filed more Fair Housing Act charges than any year since 2002. The Fair Housing Initiatives Program grantees play a vital role to enhance our civil rights law enforcement efforts."
The categories of grants awarded today are:
- Private Enforcement Initiative grants (PEI) - HUD awarded $17.5 million to help groups investigate alleged housing discrimination, and enforce the Fair Housing Act and state and local laws that are substantially equivalent to the Act. The Council's grant falls in this category.
- Education and Outreach Initiative grants (EOI) - HUD awarded $4.6 million to groups that educate the public and housing providers about their rights and obligations under federal, state, and local fair housing laws.
- Fair Housing Organizations Initiative (FHOI) - HUD awarded $5.9 million to groups that serve rural and immigrant populations in areas where there currently is no existing fair housing organization, or are otherwise underserved.
The Metropolitan Fair Housing Council of Oklahoma, Inc. (MFHC) will use its grant to conduct intakes of housing inquiries/intakes from consumers with housing questions or complaints; conduct complaint-based tests (rental, sales, lending) and systemic tests; conduct accessibility audits of covered, multi-family housing; conduct requests for reasonable accommodation or modification; and refer enforcement proposals to HUD for processing. MFHC also will partner with public and private organizations in Oklahoma to educate low-and moderate-income persons, persons with disabilities, the elderly, minorities, families with children and persons who are non-English speaking or have limited English proficiency about fair housing-fair lending practices, renters rights, foreclosure prevention and loss mitigation to increase homeownership, rental opportunities and help prevent homelessness.
FHEO and its partners in the Fair Housing Assistance Program investigate more than 10,000 housing discrimination complaints annually. People who believe they are the victims of housing discrimination should contact HUD at (800) 669-9777 (voice), or (800) 927-9275 (TTY).
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.