Washington, D.C. - United States Senators Elizabeth Warren and Edward J. Markey, along with Representatives Richard Neal, Jim McGovern, Michael Capuano, Stephen Lynch, and Bill Keating announced today that the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has awarded organizations in Massachusetts a total of $1,873,778 in funding through the Fair Housing Initiatives Program (FHIP) to assist victims of housing discrimination. More information about this federal grant program is available at HUD's website here.
"Everyone in this country deserves a fighting chance to build a future, but housing discrimination undermines our communities and makes it harder for families to climb the economic ladder," Senator Warren said. "We have an obligation to combat segregation, and to ensure that a safe and affordable home is in reach for all our families. I'm happy this federal funding will help organizations across the Commonwealth that are doing outstanding work providing assistance to people facing discrimination."
"The Fair Housing Initiatives Program is an integral part of the ongoing federal effort to remove the vestiges of discrimination from our housing system. Every citizen in Massachusetts and across the country has the right to live in the home and community they have earned. I am proud that these Massachusetts programs are receiving funding to continue working towards this goal," said Senator Markey.
"Fair housing organizations provide important services for people in cities and towns across western Massachusetts. They enforce the guidelines of the Fair Housing Act of 1968 which strictly prohibits discrimination when it comes to the sale, rent or financing of housing. I strongly believe someone's race, color, sex or religion should not prohibit them from having a decent place to live or raise a family. And these organizations are on the front lines making sure peoples basic rights are being protected," said Congressman Neal.
"Every family needs a roof over their head and a safe place to call home. Community Legal Aid in Worcester and fair housing organizations across Massachusetts play a vital role in our communities by working to prevent discrimination in housing," Congressman McGovern said. "In 2016, it is unthinkable that anyone would be denied housing because of their race, gender, religion, or national origin. This new federal funding will help so many families by supporting the great work local organizations are doing to protect equal access to housing for everyone in Massachusetts. I am grateful to HUD for this strong investment and look forward to seeing all the good it will do in our communities."
"These federal funds will give Massachusetts fair housing organizations more resources to uncover instances of discrimination and help those who believe they have been denied housing. This important work enforces fair housing laws and helps ensure that people have equal access to residential properties" said Congressman Capuano.
"I am very pleased that HUD's Fair Housing Initiatives Program awarded more than $1.8M in grant funding to organizations across Massachusetts who are working hard to prevent discrimination and expand access to housing. Suffolk University and the Fair Housing Center of Greater Boston are strong advocates for families across the 8th Congressional District and ensure that our country's fair housing laws and the Commonwealth's additional protections are strictly enforced," said Congressman Lynch.
"I am very pleased to join in announcing $425,000 in federal funding for SouthCoast Fair Housing, Inc. This organization plays a critical role in protecting renters and buyers from housing discrimination and prejudice, while ensuring that access to affordable housing remains an opportunity for residents throughout Bristol and Plymouth Counties. Receipt of this funding will preserve SCFH's irreplaceable work in uncovering transgressions and promoting tolerance," said Congressman Keating.
Organizations in Massachusetts receiving awards include: