Updated: Apr 14, 2021
The Housing Rights Center (HRC) will proudly accept the Proclamation of National Fair Housing Month from Los Angeles County Supervisor Hilda Solis as community members and advocates commemorate at the 22nd annual Housing Rights Summit this month. This year’s event, titled “COVID-19 and the Legacy of Housing Discrimination: The Path Forward,” will be held virtually on April 22, 2021 from 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM.
Congressmember Judy Chu (CA-27) and Los Angeles County Supervisor Holly Mitchell are among the conference participants who will address the importance of continued action against discrimination, hate violence, and systemic inequality in the United States. The summit will also honor the Coalition for an Anti-Racist Glendale for its courageous work to redress the history of racial exclusion in the City of Glendale. Tara Peterson, CEO of YWCA Glendale and co-founder of the Coalition, will accept the award on the group’s behalf.
In “Understanding the Cumulative Trauma of Housing Segregation,” Jesus Hernandez, PhD, will speak on the disproportionate impacts of COVID-19 in California’s historically redlined communities. John Pollock, coordinator for the National Coalition for a Civil Right to Counsel, and Cassandra Goodman, Director of Housing & Homelessness for Neighborhood Legal Services, will join HRC Deputy Director Javier Beltran for a panel analyzing emergency eviction protections. HRC’s Director of Litigation, Scott Chang, and staff attorney Rodney Legett will also speak on “Redlining in the Digital Era” about how racial discrimination persists through modern technologies, such as big data, credit algorithms, and virtual appraisals.
Summit participants will also gain access to an online resource gallery featuring materials and representatives from more than 30 social service agencies, public interest groups, and community organizations across Los Angeles and Ventura Counties.
National Fair Housing Month is observed every April to commemorate the 1968 passage of the federal Fair Housing Act, or Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act, in response to a growing demand within the civil rights movement for “open housing.” The historic law banning racial, national, and religious discrimination in housing was enacted in memory of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. just days after his assassination. It was amended in 1974 to include protections based on sex, and again in 1988 to encompass disability and familial status. In February 2021, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development expanded federal law to include protection from housing discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.
HRC’s Housing Rights Summit comes at an opportune time to address the major shifts in the fair housing landscape that have occurred in the past year. The new administration has taken historic measures to reaffirm the federal government’s commitment to undoing historic patterns of discrimination and segregation for those groups that have been denied equal access to housing. Yet the COVID-19 pandemic, ongoing racism, the economic fallout, and the steepening racial wealth gap have revealed that our nation still faces massive challenges. The summit will provide an opportunity for elected leaders, advocates, service providers and community members to delve thoroughly into these issues, and strategize the work ahead to address historic legacies of injustice.
Registration is now open for HRC's 22nd annual Housing Rights Summit at www.housingrightscenter.org/summit. To inquire about sponsorship or participating in the resource gallery, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on the Housing Rights Center and its free services, please visit www.housingrightscenter.org or call 1-800-477-5977 (TTY: 213-201-0867). Follow HRC on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to stay updated on housing news.