Interfaith Action Network Monthly
February 2019

Ready, Set, Action
What a busy month it has been!

In January, the FHJC participated in events across the region to talk about fair housing and building the beloved community, launched our Fair Housing Leadership program, released a new policy agenda on how to close the divide in housing in the NYC region, and so much more. And next month is looking to be even busier as we work to advance fair housing in the region.

Check out the latest updates below, and learn more about some upcoming opportunities to further engage with this work.
Below are some educational resources we recommend for you to learn more about fair housing.

  • A new year means new books to read! This month we are recommending "The Dream Revisited: Contemporary Debates about Housing Segregation, and Opportunity" edited by Ingrid Gould Ellen and Justin Peter Steil. This book brings together a range of expert viewpoints on the causes and consequences of the nation’s separate and unequal living patterns. Learn more here. We are also recommending "Sacred Shelter: Thirteen Journeys of Homelessness and Healing" by Susan Greenfield. This book tells the stories of some of the people affected by homelessness or working within the sector to provide programs and shelter for homeless individuals. Learn more here.

  • At the start of the new legislative session, New York State finally passed GENDA (Gender Identity Non-Discrimination Act), which amended the New York State Human Rights Law to include “gender identity or expression” as a protected class. Transgender and nonbinary individuals across the State can no longer be legally turned away from housing opportunities. Read Gov. Cuomo's press release about the bill here to learn more about this historic piece of legislation.

  • Fair Housing Toolkit现在有中文版了。¡El Toolkit de Equidad de Vivienda ahora está en español! The Fair Housing Toolkit is now in Chinese (Simplified) and Spanish! Check out the translated versions of the Fair Housing Toolkit (as well as the English language version) here.
Time to get out and advocate in your community! Below are some advocacy updates and ways that you can get involved.

  • Yesterday, the FHJC and Enterprise Community Partners, Inc. released the Regional Affordable and Fair Housing Roundtable's policy agenda, "Closing the Divide: Creating Equitable, Inclusive, and Affordable Communities." Download this policy agenda and learn more about how you can be part of the work to close the divide in housing in the New York City metropolitan region here.

  • We already discussed how pervasive source of income discrimination is across the region. This year, the #BanIcomeBiasNY Coalition is hopeful that we can get source of income protections added into the state's Human Rights Law. In fact, Governor Cuomo's executive budget proposal included source of income legislation! But we still need your help to get there. You can join this coalition to expand source of income protections statewide here. There are monthly campaign calls that you can be a part of as a member of the coalition. There will also be some lobbying opportunities in Albany in the early spring, so stay tuned for that.

  • This coming Tuesday, February 5, from 6 to 8 pm, Westchester County Executive George Latimer will holding a public forum to discuss the county's housing needs assessment. This event is a free and will be held in the Lecture Hall at the the Mt. Vernon Extension Center of Westchester Community College. If you live in Westchester or your organization works within the county, this forum is a great opportunity to learn more about what the county is planning to address its housing needs and to voice your opinions on the housing barriers in Westchester. Learn more here.

  • The FHJC is also a member of the New York City Alliance for School Integration and Desegregation (ASID), a coalition is working to combat the pervasive and systemic segregation within New York City public schools. There are many ways that people can be involved with this effort. Check out ASID's policy agenda, which includes more detailed information about how ASID is working to integrate and desegregate our schools. Additionally, ASID hosts regular gatherings to educate New Yorkers on this issue, and to share information on where the coalition is in the work and ways people can get involved and support ASID's work. Check out ASID's calendar to learn more about the coalition's upcoming events.

  • Wondering how you can advance fair housing in your community? Check out our list of 30 Ways to Advance Fair Housing here.
Building the Beloved Community
Want to get involved in the Building the Beloved Community interfaith initiative in some other way? Below are some updates from our interfaith initiative:

  • On January 25, 2019, the FHJC held its first Fair Housing Leadership Workshop with our first Fair Housing Leader. It was a morning of deep conversation and reflection about fair housing and the intersecting justice issues that are impacted by where we live. The Fair Housing Leader left the workshop with ideas and action-planning tools to help her get to work in her community to affect change. There is still time to register for the two upcoming leadership workshops on February 7 and 13. Learn more and register for a leadership workshop here.

  • The FHJC participated in events across the region to educate people on fair housing issues and discuss the Building the Beloved Community initiative. If you are a member of a group, congregation or community that would benefit from learning more about their fair housing rights and how to combat housing discrimination, invite us to host a fair housing presentation in your community. If you are interested in hosting an event in your community, fill out the form on our website and we will be in touch to set it up.

  • There are groups and communities across the country working to build the beloved community where they live. Check out this article and video about the efforts that leaders and community members in Biddleville, NC, to create an integrated and inclusive community in a once deeply segregated neighborhood.
“Our goal is to create a beloved community and this will require a qualitative change in our souls as well as a quantitative change in our lives.”
- Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Fair Housing Justice Center | 30-30 Northern Blvd., Suite 302, Long Island City, NY 11101
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