Civil rights groups sued the US Housing and Urban Development Department for its suspension of the AFFH Rule, or the Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing Rule, throughout the country,
The AFFH Rule has applied to all HUD funding since the Fair Housing Act was passed in 1968. It was not until July 2015, however, that HUD adopted the first effective set of federal regulations, the AFFH Rule, to guide the compliance efforts of local and state recipients of HUD’s block grant funds. AFFH Rule regulations are designed to eliminate housing discrimination and to promote residential integration.
This complaint alleges that HUD unlawfully suspended the oversight of civil rights protections of as much as $5B per year until 2024, the effective year that oversight protection through regulation enforcement could be reinstated.
The AFFH Rule is considered to be an important tool for ensuring access to safe, affordable housing in strong, viable neighborhoods. It helps to combat growing inequality resulting from increasing the number of Americans paying +50% of their income on rent. The AFFH Rule helps to combat ongoing segregation and it helps to ensure that no community is left behind due to lack of housing affordability, lack of accessible housing for people with disabilities, lack of adequate infrastructure and water services and lack of access to survivors of domestic violence and abuse.
The co-plaintiffs in this lawsuit include
The National Fair Housing Alliance
Texas Low Income Housing Information Services
The co-counsels in the case include
The American Civil Liberties Union
The NAACP Legal Defense & Educational Fund
Reiman, Dane and Colfax
The Lawyer’s Committee for Civil Rights Under Law
The Poverty & Race Research Action Council
Public Citizen Litigation Group
You’ll note that Texas civil rights organizations and non-profits are very much involved with this case. In Texas, the AFFH Rule is considered to be a bulwark against any unequal rebuilding process that has already and may in the future take place in the wake of Hurricane Harvey.
We’ll update you on the progress of this lawsuit.