A group of seven Congressional Democrats from California sent a letter to HUD Secretary Ben Carson expressing their concern about his proposal to change HUD’s mission statement from one “that promotes inclusion and discrimination-free communities to one that does not strive to offer the same protections.” While some discriminatory housing practices have declined since the passage of the Fair Housing Act of 1968, the need for HUD to be a champion for fair housing has not changed. The Congressional leaders state that the “changes to the HUD mission statement would erase decades worth of progress” combating housing discrimination. The letter asks Dr. Carson to retain the current mission statement, commit to ensuring the agency builds inclusive and sustainable communities, and provide a written response by April 9.
The authors of the letter – Senators Kamala Harris and Dianne Feinstein and Representatives Jared Huffman, Jerry McNerney, Mark DeSaulnier, Barbara Lee, and Mike Thompson – join hundreds of organizations expressing their concern about Dr. Carson’s proposal to remove anti-discrimination language from HUD’s mission statement. The Fair Housing Task Force (FHTF), of which NLIHC is a member, submitted a letter to Dr. Carson signed by 573 organizations and individuals – 164 national organizations and 409 state and local groups and individuals – condemning the proposal. The letter states in part: “We urge you in the strongest possible terms to reverse course and retain language in your agency’s mission statement that reflects one of HUD’s most important responsibilities: enforcement and promotion of the Fair Housing Act. Many of our organizations worked diligently with HUD to ensure that this language would be included in HUD’s mission statement as a public acknowledgment that this part of HUD’s responsibilities is every bit as important as its role in providing resources for housing and community development.”
Read the California Congressional Democrats’ letter at: https://bit.ly/2Iu0bym
Read the Fair Housing Task Force’s letter at: https://bit.ly/2Df19eA