Overview statement - Housing

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Saving Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing Rule

Nearly 50 years ago, Congress adopted the Fair Housing Act, landmark legislation necessary to end discrimination in housing and eliminate the barriers created by segregation.  The AFFH regulation —designed with considerable public input and piloted extensively — was adopted in 2015 and was a critical and long overdue step in carrying out Congress’ intent. It provided jurisdictions with a roadmap and tools for compliance and included measures for accountability.  [How AFFH has pushed housing justice in jurisdictions; how many implementations across the country.]

Without warning, HUD has decided effectively to suspend the regulation, leaving local jurisdictions confused, giving local residents less voice in important decisions about their communities, and reinstating an approach to fair housing that the Government Accountability Office found to be ineffective and poorly administered.  [POLICYLINK ENGAGEMENT W/ AFFH, LINKS TO DEDICATED PAGE ON AFFH] - see convening AFFH


Anti-Displacement Policy Network

Displacement pressures are rising in communities across the country, with tremendous costs for families as well as cities. Princeton sociologist Matthew Desmond’s research revealed how eviction is both a cause and a consequence of poverty, often sending families – particularly families headed by single Black women – into a downward spiral of economic duress. The Urban Institute estimates that evictions and financial insecurity more broadly cost city budgets millions every year: at least $24 million in San Francisco and at least $8 million in New Orleans. 

Launching in early 2018, the Anti-Displacement Policy Network is a learning community of the All-In Cities initiative at PolicyLink. We will support a cohort of 8-10 cities that commit to developing comprehensive anti-displacement policy agendas. Through virtual learning labs, individualized coaching sessions with national experts, and peer-learning opportunities, teams from each city will analyze their displacement challenges for renters, at-risk homeowners, local businesses, and cultural and religious institutions, and develop actionable solutions for their communities. At the end of their participation, cities will have a new, robust set of tools and strategies to effectively work with their advocacy community to slow, stop, and reverse displacement in their communities.

PolicyLink is conducting targeted outreach for this network in select cities where we have ongoing work and relationships. For information on how to apply, please reach out to Chris Schildt, Senior Associate, at cschildt@policylink.org.

This project is supported by the Kresge Foundation and JP Morgan Chase.

Carson Watch:  

Housing advocates, community organizers, and residents in the the state and the nation are pushing back against displacement and housing insecurity, and working with determination to ensure that all have access to quality housing. For example, immediately after the Trump administration took office, with Ben Carson as head of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), PolicyLink,Public Advocates and other partners formed CarsonWatch . Supported by grassroots networks, the initiative fights attempts to roll back fair housing protections, cut budgets, and undermine the housing security of millions of Americans. 

Place-based housing policy

  • California state legislative 
    • FB CBA - delivering 
    • see Chione/Lewis - repeal Costa Hawkins; reentry housing for returning citizens


Housing is the biggest cost in a household budget and the single biggest factor making the Bay Area inhospitable for many lower and middle-wage workers.4 Bay Area businesses have ranked the high cost of workforce housing as their top concern with long commutes to more affordable housing stock impacting productivity and the environment.5 In response to these concerns, the Oakland City Council requested guidance on policy solutions. The city’s Strategic Initiatives Unit in the Department of Housing & Community Development, which spearheads housing and community equity initiatives, commissioned PolicyLink and Urban Strategies Council to work with the city to analyze the challenges and recommend comprehensive policy solutions.

Arts & Culture campaigns, anti-displacement (Kalima to send text on grantees doing housing focused work)

Pittsburgh, AIC

Nola - assessment of fair housing