"“Americans have long been trained to see the deficiencies of people rather than policy.”"

– Ibram X. Kendi

Welcome to day 14

Topic: Housing Equity, Edition 2

Challenge yourself to understand how housing discrimination and racism are perpetuating racial housing disparities today and learn about policy changes we could implement to change that reality.

Reminder, no matter who you are or where you are on the journey, you will not be perfect. Try to digest the information slowly and go at your own pace. Allow time for reflection and avoid feeling pressured to tackle everything.

Institutional Racism: Discriminatory policies and practices within organizations and institutions.

Black people, Indigenous people, and other people of color are overrepresented in homeless populations due to structural racism, historical measures, network impoverishment, and other racial disparities across systems.

Discrimination in housing contributes to the persistence of housing disparities across racial groups. Practices that require families facing eviction or homelessness to rely on their network for support overlook the financial strain that their networks are already likely facing.

The COVID-19 pandemic has made these problems worse. Record levels of job losses, tightening credit markets, and a growing risk of evictions and foreclosures threaten housing stability. We must understand the challenges today and then look at the policies that continue to perpetuate the problem. Even though some forms of discrimination are difficult to detect, Urban Institute and other policy researchers help us to understand how it affects outcomes today.

Challenge Menu

The Intersections Between Domestic and Sexual Violence, Racism, and Homelessness

The need for safe and affordable housing is one of the most vital and immediate concerns for survivors of violence and abuse. This video illustrates the intersections between domestic and sexual violence, racism, and homelessness. (3 minutes)

An Equitable Framework for Housing Policy Solutions for COVID-19 and Beyond 

The authors offer lessons from Hurricane Katrina and the Great Recession that provide policymakers with more than reactive housing  policies that return households to a pre-pandemic status quo. Instead, the article offers ways policymakers can embrace economic mobility and racial equity as their goals, aiming to foster not only economic success but also people’s power and autonomy and their sense of being valued in their communities. 

Mapping Inequality: Redlining Map of Atlanta

Explore the history of redlining in Atlanta through this interactive map hosted by the University of Richmond.

Become a Champion for Your Community 

Community champions like Alison Johnson, the Executive Director of Housing Justice League, a community-led grassroots organization, are fighting to improve equality and end housing disparities impacting Black families in Greater Atlanta. Housing Justice League’s mission is to work with tenants and renters to stimulate their power and drive positive impact in organizing for fair housing and tenant rights.

Segregated by Design 

The documentary film ‘Segregated by Design’ examines the forgotten history of how our federal, state, and local governments unconstitutionally segregated every major metropolitan area in America through law and policy.  (18 minutes)

Discriminatory Housing Policy Leads to the Devaluation of Black People

In this video, Brookings Fellow Andre Perry explains how there is nothing wrong with Black people that ending racism cannot solve, and why we must work to overcome inequalities by countering the policy-based devaluation of the Black community. (3 minutes)

ChangeMakers with Katie Goar: Conversation with Eugene Jones

Affordable housing is the backbone of better opportunities for all. Whether you want to learn more about economic development, government funding, why affordable housing makes good economic policy, or why the total community benefits from affordable housing, this is the podcast for you. On this episode, hear from ChangeMaker Eugene Jones, the CEO of the Atlanta Housing Authority. (21 minutes)

A House Divided No More: Six Steps to End Racial Inequity in Housing and Homelessness

Watch Marc Dones and Jeffrey Olivet of Center for Social Innovation discuss the disparate racial impacts of homelessness and lack of affordable housing. By focusing on housing and homelessness, we can better assist recovery from mental health conditions, substance use disorders and trauma. If we draw on strategies from every sector – public, private, nonprofit, business, technology, academia – we can improve behavioral health services for this vulnerable population. (21 minutes)