HUD Archives: News Releases

HUD No. 01-039
Further Information:
In the Washington, DC area: 202/708-0685
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For Release
April 11, 2001


en español

WASHINGTON - U.S. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Mel Martinez and Attorney General John Ashcroft today commemorated the 33rd anniversary of the Fair Housing Act by pledging to continue aggressively fighting housing discrimination.

"To deny anyone a place to call 'home' is to deny that person their lawful share of the American Dream," Martinez said.

"I am committed to enforcing our nation's fair housing laws, which protect the rights of any American to live in any home in any neighborhood," he added. "HUD will aggressively pursue those who ignore the law and abrogate that right."

The HUD Secretary, a member of the President's Fair Housing Council, was also joined at the event by the U.S. Attorney General, another Council member.

"I'm pleased to be working with Secretary Martinez to make sure all Americans' rights are guaranteed," Attorney General John Ashcroft said. "Discrimination in housing simply will not be tolerated, and we will prosecute those who violate the Fair Housing Act."

Each man spoke about his department's efforts to fight housing discrimination, and then signed the Fair Housing Pledge.

The Fair Housing Act of 1968 bars housing discrimination because of race, color, religion, sex, disability, family status and national origin. The Act covers the sale, rental, financing and advertising of almost all housing in the nation.

Fair housing investigations are conducted by HUD investigators, state and city agencies working with HUD, and private fair housing groups that receive HUD funds.

The Fair Housing Council, chaired by the HUD Secretary, is comprised of the secretaries of Health and Human Services, Transportation, Education, Labor, Defense, Agriculture, Veterans Affairs, Treasury, Interior and the Attorney General. Also on the Council are the Chair of the Federal Reserve, Comptroller of the Currency, the Director of the Office of Thrift Supervision, the Chair of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., and other executive department officials that the President may appoint.

(Note: Below is the text of the Fair Housing Pledge signed today during Fair Housing Month by Secretary Martinez and Attorney General Ashcroft.)

"As members of the President's Fair Housing Council established by Executive Order 12892, we pledge to administer the programs of our Department or Agency in support of the Fair Housing Act of 1968 as amended in 1988, and aggressively fight to end housing discrimination because of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, familial status or handicap."



Content Archived: March 26, 2010