The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) on Wednesday announced it awarded more than $40 million to fair housing organizations across the nation, with $850,000 for New Jersey, to confront violations of the nation’s landmark Fair Housing Act and help end housing discrimination.
Earlier in March, HUD awarded nearly $2.3 million to New Jersey’s local homeless programs.
The grants are being awarded through the Department’s Fair Housing Initiatives Program (FHIP) and the Fair Housing Assistance Program (FHAP) to help people who believe they have been victims of housing discrimination and to educate the public and housing providers on the nation’s fair housing laws.
The following were awarded funding: In Hackensack, the Fair Housing Council of Northern New Jersey will receive $300,000; New Jersey Citizen Action Education Fund Inc. will get $125,000. In Newark, New Jersey Citizen Action Education Fund Inc. will receive $300,000, while Fair Housing Council of Northern New Jersey will be the recipient of $125,000.
“HUD is committed to supporting efforts to rid discrimination from our society,” said HUD Secretary Ben Carson.“ The grants we are awarding today will enable our fair housing partner organizations to combat unlawful policies and behavior and foster practices that ensure everyone has access to safe, affordable housing, free from discrimination.”
“Housing discrimination frays the very sense of self and security to which all Americans are entitled. HUD continues to work toward leveling the playing field for all renters and potential homeowners, so that they may live where they choose,” said Lynne Patton, HUD Regional Administrator for New York and New Jersey. “PHIP grants provide local organizations with the funding and tools necessary to root out offenders and protect vulnerable populations in Region II.”
HUD’s FHIP grants support a wide range of fair housing enforcement, and education and outreach activities. The grants will allow the groups to provide fair housing enforcement through testing in the rental and sales markets, file fair housing complaints with HUD, and conduct investigations. Additionally, the education and outreach activities these organizations will conduct will help to educate the public, housing providers, and local governments about their rights and responsibilities under the Fair Housing Act.