Assessment of Fair Housing
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) requires all communities to prepare an Assessment of Fair Housing (AFH) if they receive annual formula grants. Lee County receives three formula grants totaling more than $3 million from HUD: Community Development Block Grant (CDBG), HOME Investment Partnership, and Emergency Solutions Grant (ESG).
The Assessment of Fair Housing identifies fair housing issues, and sets goals to overcome those issues over a five year period. The 2019-2023 Assessment of Fair Housing is currently being developed through collaboration between Lee County, the City of Fort Myers, the City of Cape Coral, the Housing Authority of the City of Fort Myers, and the Lee County Housing Authority. These collaborating jurisdictions are currently accepting proposals from qualified contractors for the completion of the Regional Assessment of Fair Housing. Propsals must be submitted electronically by 5:00 pm on Friday, August 18, 2017.
The completion of the regional Assessment of Fair Housing (AFH) requires input from residents, realtors, lenders, landlords, housing providers, social service agencies, and other interested persons on important fair housing issues, HUD provided fair housing data, and local fair housing data. A draft of the HUD and local data to be included in the AFH is available for review below.
Further input is gathered through comments accepted at public meetings and through surveys available online and in paper format. Input from residents, realtors, lenders, landlords, housing providers, social service agencies, and other interested persons regarding fair housing issues will assist Lee County in Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing. The information gathered will assist in the evaluation and assessment of fair housing issues and barriers that restrict access to opportunity.
Fair Housing: It is Your Right!
Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968, better known as the Fair Housing Act (FHA), made it unlawful to discriminate in any aspect relating to the sale, rental or financing of housing, or in the provisions of brokerage services or facilities in connection with the sale or rental of a dwelling because of:
- National Origin
- Familial Status (when there are children under the age of 18 and/or a pregnant women)
The Fair Housing Amendments of 1988 strengthened the administrative enforcement provisions of Title VIII and added prohibitions against housing discrimination based on disability and familial status. It also provided for the award of monetary damages where discriminatory housing practices are found.
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) is the federal agency with primary responsibility for enforcing the Fair Housing Act. Since the passage of the FHA, there have been great improvements in providing equal housing opportunity. However, discrimination still exists, making the FHA an extremely important tool in fighting against housing discrimination.
Additional Fair Housing Resources:
HUD Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity
Florida Commission on Human Relations
National Fair Housing Alliance