WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced that it is making $19.4 million available to help HUD Fair Housing Initiatives Program (FHIP) agencies conduct activities that will address discriminatory housing practices related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The funds, which are provided through the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARP) signed into law by President Biden on March 11, 2021, will allow private fair housing enforcement organizations to respond to fair housing inquires and complaints, conduct fair housing testing, and implement education and outreach activities related to the COVID-19 pandemic. The funds will also be used to address fair housing issues affecting individuals and families experiencing housing instability, including those who may face displacement due to discriminatory evictions and foreclosures.
These ARP funds may be used by fair housing organizations to equitably expand housing enforcement services for underserved populations who need their services the most. Underserved populations include individuals making fair housing complaints who come from low-income backgrounds and persons with disabilities, as well as people of color, including African Americans, Hispanics, and Asian American and Pacific Islanders. Applicants for the funding may also propose new fair housing projects relating to discriminatory practices arising in connection with the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Housing stability will be a critically important part of America’s continuing recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Jeanine Worden, HUD’s Acting Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity. “The funding we’re announcing today will give our fair housing partner organizations the financial resources they need to address various forms of discrimination that may occur as a result of rental and sales practices, as well as changing credit and real estate operations, related to the pandemic.”
This funding opportunity creates three funding levels for FHIP organizations, based on the average of their three previous annual operating budgets. The three funding award levels include:
Level I – up to $75,000 (for organizations with an average annual operating budget of less than $500,000.)
Level II – up to $125,000 (for organizations with an average annual operating budget of between $500,000 and $700,000.)
Level III – up to $350,000 (for organizations with an average annual operating budget of greater than $700,000.)
Applications must be received by August 18, 2021.
Organizations that are interested in applying for funding should go to www.Grants.gov to obtain a copy of the specific Notice of Funding Opportunity, forms, instructions, and other application materials. Additional information can be found on HUD’s website: www.hud.gov.
People who believe they have experienced discrimination may file a complaint by contacting HUD’s Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity at (800) 669-9777 (voice) or (800) 877-8339 (Relay). Housing discrimination complaints may also be filed by going to the following website: www.hud.gov/fairhousing.
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