Fair Housing

Fair housing advocates are suing the Department of Housing and Urban Development to compel it to follow a rule meant to help prevent segregation and comply with the Fair Housing Act. The suit, which also names HUD Secretary Ben Carson, was filed Tuesday morning.

Gabriel Cristóver Pérez / KUT

An advocacy group in Austin is watching a federal lawsuit that challenges a New York landlord's blanket ban on renting to people with criminal backgrounds.   

Gabriel Cristóver Pérez / KUT

The Austin City Council is moving forward with plans for the region’s first-ever fair housing assessment. The effort aims to shed light on issues of housing discrimination across Central Texas.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon/KUT News

After almost a year of searching, Annette Price is settling into her new apartment in North Central Austin. She lives alone in the one-bedroom unit with her dog, Candy, but she says she doesn’t feel completely at home.

Her apartment complex is one of the few places in Austin where the 52-year-old could get approved for housing, because about 30 years ago, she was convicted of murder.

Syeda Hasan / KUT

Austin City Council has voted to sue the state of Texas over a law that blocks the city from enforcing an anti-discrimination housing ordinance.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

Austin City Council approved a review today of how fair housing practices measure up in Austin and across Central Texas. 

The federal Fair Housing Act aims to protect people from discrimination when renting, buying or financing a home. Despite those protections, the reality is that housing discrimination persists in many cities. This will be the first time the Austin-Round Rock metro area gets a comprehensive look at this issue across the entire region. 

A Look Back at Austin's Lesser-Known Petitions

Jan 27, 2016
Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

Petitions are having a moment right now.

But, despite their recent resurgence into the municipal zeitgeist, they’ve shaped the city in ways a lot of Austinites may or may not realize. There are well-known ones like the Save Our Springs ordinance or the 10-1 council reorganization petition, but what about the other times a petition's helped change Austin?

DonkeyHotey / flickr

From Texas Standard:

Immigration is often discussed in terms of government policy and official enforcement efforts – or lack thereof, depending on whom you ask. But when citizens take actions into their own hands, the dimensions of the discussion get more complicated.

In Dallas, one landlord is reportedly checking the immigration status of tenants and rejecting lease renewals of those who don’t have social security numbers. Now some people are urging Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings and the Dallas City Council to step in and stop these unofficial immigration checks.

Supreme Court: Texas Reinforced Segregated Housing

Jun 25, 2015
Supreme Court of the United States

From the Texas Tribune: The biggest federal housing subsidy program in Texas — which awarded $9.7 billion in tax credits from 1990 to 2011 — effectively has been reinforcing segregated housing, the U.S. Supreme Court found Thursday.

Divided along ideological lines, the high court ruled 5-4 against the state of Texas, which administers the federally backed subsidy program.

"Much progress remains to be made in our Nation’s continuing struggle against racial isolation," Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote in the majority opinion. "We must remain wary of policies that reduce homeowners to nothing more than their race."

Jon Shapley/KUT News

It’s no secret that there's not enough housing in Austin. The city has few homes with more than three bedrooms, and it doesn't have enough affordable housing.

There’s even a scarcity of upscale homes. Rents have risen as that market has gotten tighter, too. Has the housing demand led more landlords to engage in unfair housing practices?