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Fair housing complaints tick up

Fair housing is still an ongoing effort. In 2017, nearly 30,000 housing discrimination complaints were filed – a slight increase from 2016, according to the 2018 Fair Housing Trends Report: Making Every Neighborhood a Place of Opportunity.

The report was released by the National Fair Housing Alliance (NFHA), which says there are many more unaccounted-for cases and estimates, and that the number of offenses is around 3.7 million annually.

More than half a million housing discrimination complaints have been processed since 1996 – the year the NFHA started collecting such data. The three most common complaints concern disability (57 percent), race (19 percent) and family status (9 percent).

“This is a pivotal year for fair housing,” says Lisa Rice, president and CEO of NFHA. “As the 2018 Trends Report shows, we must put an end to the many institutionalized barriers that prevent too many families in this country from fair access to housing. We must commit to making every neighborhood a place of opportunity for its residents and to making all communities open to all people, regardless of race, national origin, disability or other protected status. It has been 50 years, and the Fair Housing Act still has not been fully implemented. We cannot build a thriving society as long as our nation is plagued by discrimination, segregation and severe economic inequality.”

The Fair Housing Act was enacted on April 11, 1968. The National Association of Realtors® – along with other housing groups – has been commemorating its 50th anniversary this year. NAR is partnering with the Women’s Council of Realtors, the National Association of Real Estate Brokers, the National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals, the Asian Real Estate Association of America, and the National Association of Gay and Lesbian Real Estate Professionals to create initiatives to enforce the commitment to fair housing and property rights.

Access to fair housing flyers, ads, and videos is available at

“Realtors are proud to lead the way toward greater equality in housing opportunities; in 2016, NAR’s Board of Directors passed policy for the association to support or initiate legislative and regulatory efforts that advance equal housing opportunity on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity,” says Elizabeth Mendenhall, NAR’s president.

“As we commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Fair Housing Act, we urge Congress to adopt legislation and fair housing protections based on sexual orientation and gender identity.”

Source: “Report Finds Housing Discrimination Still a Challenge,” RISMedia (May 6, 2018)

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