Representatives Gomez and Jayapal Join 26 Members of Congress in Letter to President Urging Immediate Release of “Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing” Rule

Representative Pramila Jayapal (D-WA), chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus (CPC), and Representative Jimmy Gomez (D-CA), chair of the Congressional Renters Caucus, sent a letter to President Biden urging his administration to release immediately the final “Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing” (AFFH) rule. The letter was signed by 26 additional members of Congress, most of them members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus.

The letter summarizes the affordable housing shortage and its impact on many different areas of life while observing that “discrimination and inequities in housing” are evident in each of these areas. Fortunately, the federal government has access to an effective tool for correcting these inequities: the AFFH rule, which would help fulfill the promises of the “Fair Housing Act of 1968” by promoting fair housing. The letter urges the administration to act swiftly in releasing the rule: “Until the AFFH rule is released,” explain the letter’s authors, “the Fair Housing Act’s promises to prevent discrimination and affirmatively further fair housing will remain unrealized, even 56 years after its enactment. We urge your administration to finally release this crucial tool in the struggle for civil rights and accessible housing to hold our institutions accountable and create communities where everyone can live with dignity.”

The letter led by Representatives Jayapal and Gomez adds to the already great number of voices urging President Biden to implement fair housing. In April, nearly 300 state, local, and national organizations sent a letter to the White House pressing the administration to “follow through on its commitments and release the final AFFH rule” (see Memo, 4/22). Meanwhile, House Financial Services Committee Ranking Member Maxine Waters (D-CA) has sent a similar letter to the President, observing that “AFFH has gone largely unenforced” since passage of the Fair Housing Act in 1968 (see Memo, 4/29). More recently, the chairs of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC), the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC), and the Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC) urged immediate release of the AFFH rule (see Memo, 5/6), bringing the total number of congressional leaders urging fair housing implementation in letters to the president to 32.

Read the letter here.