April – Fair Housing Month
Every year, the month of April is recognized as Fair Housing Month.
April was picked as the month to spotlight fair housing as it was the month in which President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act of 1968, specifically April 11, 1968, which was follow-up legislation to the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The 1968 Act expanded the provisions of the previous Act by prohibiting discrimination in the sale, rental and financing of housing based on 4 initial protected classes: race, color, religion, and national origin. Later gender, disability and familial status were added as additional protected classes.
The passage of this Act did not come easy. Congress considered the bill from 1966-1967 but were not able to gather strong enough support for its passage. This changed with the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King on April 4, 1968 as it brought national attention to the cause. Beyond this tragedy, the growing Vietnam casualty list also brought focus to the cause as many of these casualties were African American and Hispanic and their survivors back at home were finding it difficult to obtain housing in certain residential neighborhoods due to their race and national origin. The NAACP, GI Forum and the National Committee Against Discrimination in Housing lobbied hard for the passage of the Act. Between the Dr. King assassination, the subsequent rioting that followed this event and the heavy lobbying efforts by the previously mentioned groups, the bill passed through Congress in a speedy fashion and was signed into law in time to serve as a fitting memorial at Dr. King’s funeral.
The Act’s first anniversary was wildly celebrated in April 1969 and in subsequent years, the celebration grew larger and larger until April was officially proclaimed “Fair Housing Month”.
We are a Fair Housing Company
Excel Development Group is committed to adhering to the Federal Fair Housing Act of 1968 and the Fair Housing Amendments Act of 1988. These acts prohibit us from taking any of the following actions based on race, color, national origin, religion, sex, familial status or handicap:
• Refuse to rent or sell housing
• Make housing unavailable
• Deny a dwelling
• Set different terms, conditions or privileges for sale or rental of a dwelling
• Provide different housing services or facilities
• Falsely deny that housing is available for inspection, sale, or rental
If you feel that you have been a victim of housing discrimination, call HUD at (800-669-9777) for information about filing a complaint. HUD’s web site also has information about filing a complaint (www.hud.gov).