tv Housing Policy CSPAN April 24, 2018 1:13am-3:24am EDT
i am pleased to welcome such a great group this morning atlantic live is a live event division of the atlantic and we are proud to bring this great publication to life on stage with "in-depth" coverage of the most consequential topics ofon our time building off of decking of commentary by the atlantic on the issue that undoubtedly is deeply personal to everyone, housing. it is a commodity still not available to everyone in fair measure. we will talk today about the legacy of the fair housing act that came at a pivotal moment in the civil rights movement of the 60s one signed into law men refuse the dwelling because of race color religion or national origin. the laws language to pursue
justice and we look back on the original intent has passed over the years that we have -- accomplished what remains to be done so this morning you will hear the story of those who look at this position at the local or national level through the big question i would like to thank the underwriter for making today possible fannie mae. please silence your cell phone to keep them out to follow the conversation on twitter # atlantic building equity we will begin today with a look back at what was happening in the american communities in 50s and 60s the segregation and discriminatory
packages on debt practices under these circumstances many great challenges to purchase a home off their own the following atlantic video introduces the story of the contract buyer's leakage of the present chicago banded together to fight discriminatory housing practices in the neighborhood. let's take aigor look. ♪ in the question of housing is the problem this country faces by a large black live in substandard housing and pay a large penalty ♪
mostly everyone that was black were sold a contract if you miss a payment in three months they could take the property back no lawyers or know nothing to help that was it like blocks like this through the section of chicago westside ghetto the people who live here about their home from a real estate speculator to double or triple the value and sell it on contract because they could not get a conventional mortgage. under the contract the buyer makes them pay high interest with no equity if you default on even one payment at any time use the property and everything paid into it. [inaudible]
>> these people who have cheated us we have the right to be human beings in our society. we should buy our homes at a decent price for the contract buyers more chance for people in this area to move out of this grip of society and stand on your own 2 feet and fight for what you know is right. [applause] ♪
>> little mentally that would only be effective if people can approach each other to make if they keep within the law this is war? be my guess it is. >> we went up and down the street if they bought on contract and rediscovered the average overcharge was $10000 in white people were paying about 20000. mag to continue the story of the contract buyers leak welcome to the sage ralph who volunteered as a b contractor as the organizer and the daughter i will north dale with her decision to participate help
the organization make history leavitt conversation please welcome atlantic staff writer please take it away before 17.at >> that video $20000 per family you got involved after they found that out what were their objective and how do you meet those objectives? >> the objective religiously of the organization was to discover that type of data which in today's dollars, but at the time imagine what that would be in today's dollars. it amounted to roughly 75%
markup on average read what the sellers paid for the property just days earlier and then turned around to felt her black family at the inflated. information out because it was hard to admit you were taken advantage of your desperate for housing in the play for your kid and people do desperate things sometimes you may not think it is a viable solution that you find on the dotted line then you have the house later to find out they andt their neighbors were really the boat that is not
illegal certainly unethical campaign by blockbusters or those who could take it vintage of them to the color of their skin. >> you had a house that not building equity. >> exactly. >> so the contract buyers they were withholding your payment that was not the initial step but when the documentationn was made the difference between the buying and selling a and presented them to the sellers request they renegotiate the contract for one individual
apparently had a come to jesus moment and woke up at his wife convinced him that they were overcharged and the rest of the full said it is legal they find it tough as nails any effort to renegotiate is when this tactic came up to withhold the monthly payment and then they would go into an escrow account for the money if they're not that we are trying to avoid paying the money not give it to them and thatat eventually enticed a number of the others to enter into renegotiations of the
contract. >> so it was better to be a legal precedent and they did take legal action? there was a lawsuit? >> actually to one for the westside community w and later a group of homeowners on the southside. and working away so they did not resolve the matter. and with over 300 homeowners over the years. >> yesterday we had fine until
about your family in mississipp mississippi. he met what have you learned about the motivation and how they felt with that disadvantageous desire? be met my parents had to come up with going on and then to tell us to fight what you believe in and that is what they did and then they came out on top. >> so dealing with the of the community? >> absolutely.
and then she said i'm going. that has to be done and she went anyway. >> what was the resolution they actually do the renegotiating came out on top it was like a thousand dollars or something like that. >> but now with the thousand dollars return what is your sense of how it impacted your family and some belonging and the city? >> i love the community. with the families that were there well with that pride and that we could really stand
tall because my mom and eventually my dad stood up and we were very proud of that. >> watching a video with your parents going through all of this the line that said it's not much but it's mine. they made it like we were rich we hade everything and everything we needed which was 11 straight and their determination. so what about your own background? with that organization.
and then in the two week period. and my brother was part of that student group recruited by mcnamara. and then to hang around mondale because atg that point i go into the peace corps later to contact jack and said i would really like to spend timeme working with you and by that time the foundation had been established landed up working there.
for those that were doing pro bono work so that allowed me to react with the buyers and that data to have her case in court. so then living in the community in washington d.c., the similar instances and then that lifelong experience with the decades past. what are the trends there? >> growing up in a very working-class neighborhood i was told and those
when you got your own home and thinking of legacy and heritage not a lot but it's mine. i don't want to get emotional either. i knew my mom and dad would be very proud. for so many major i didn't go through with a wet thrill. when -- went through. >> so to talk about going to the process. but then to come back.
so to get your sent -- sense of sitting here thinking about this thinking about the impact not just for cargo but how we think about this problem today nationwide. >> i wish i could say editing the positive impact and with the housing crisis but then they were gobbled up and resold something very much like the contract i guess the
or where they want to to and to have this conversation. >> one of the main things i saw is the privatization of tax collection i am wondering if you have any. withav that? accountable permit officials to outsource the collection of the past due property taxes? it makes it easy to avoid that accountability of the people that they screwed over. >> i'm not familiar with that myself. >> i don't know. i guess a great question i
will keep it in my back pocket. anyone else? >> i was just wondering did that and the contract process? or were other homeowners going forward offered regular mortgages what is the ease the contract sorted that continue? >> my understanding that the time that once this matter was being resolved for the original group of homeowners and then to admit the error of theirr ways when the bank
chicago with that renegotiation process makes future potential buyers have those mortgages accessible to them -- depend it still doesn't talk about a level playing field. but with generation after generation and the creditworthiness of those that is identified. >> and to keep good credit. he met yet. it isn't just the financial
because in many ways when the housingg crisis there is massive disparity between the white hispanic population. >> with the fair housing act obviously when it was enacted after the assassination of mlk and trying to get enacted that holds a lot has the basic of our communities but the reality is that there has been decades of federally genuine segregation and we remain deeply segregated with transportation and studies show that they were at those
levels because that financial crisis was wiped out but not equal the from all communities so that has been a marker and a milestone of that progress and now the fair housing act is one of the lines that is most subject to civil rights legislation going leaps forward until we halted the ability to be fully implemented that was intended so there is a lot of work to do through that profound segregation and remember there is no naturally occurring phenomenon and therefore
without explicit that the policies and practices to address that long-standing segregation. >> woman have to be incredibly naïve not to understand it is more difficult from an african-american that was true prior and has continued to be however there has been some unfortunate changes and economist at harvard and from university of washington, look at distances data and today segregated neighborhoods biracial concentration are far less common than they were at the time of the passage of the fair housing act today for every 200an homes every 199 are
not all white. there is a black resident in virtually every census tract that may may not mean a lot but all white neighborhood in united states are effectively extinct even in chicago look at the dissimilarity index is all one race or another race? overall dissimilarity in chicago and has declined between 187525 percentage point agreed it is work to be done but maybe the government did not do a job that they all post that fair housing act and it makes a difference.
>> there is a lot of data with the affordable housing that is creating this change especially in urban communities that is a real testament to the challenge that we face that medium fica score for all americans the 718 if you look at the lending policies most wonders even fha below 620 without adding a fica score that medium fica score and then once you drop you find out harder to access credit what is a large percentage of that that is below 620 has less than two
reported credit histories. utilities are not reported your rent is not reported your uber right those typically are not reported as credit history so you end up with the reality of the lack of credit of the questioning we need to talk about the opportunities to square up a square hole to eliminate which can protect against redlining how do we solve for that and ultimately what they think about focusing on. >> whose responsibility is it? we have a credit problem with
people of color they cannot get houses ory conventional loan that is how they build their wealth creates a cycle where it becomes impossible or near impossible to have a home that will appreciate in value. >> everybody is looking at me and everybody has thoughts coming into the obama ministrationng there was a program with down payment assistance trying to help people without down payment that became a self-funded program with default rates of 35% that was heavily concentrated in minority communities that people who saw that as an opportunity but the outcome was real so to be
careful but i do think one of those great opportunities to look at the byron today found that is not traditionally reported and we talked about those who drive for uber employee vehicles to some of those services online to generate income why are we still relying on a traditional credit score methodology to underscore the demographics that don't have the traditional way to establish a credit score when that is the wage separation that pile on the economic but what we really need is a universal
focus to say we are in a housing crisis. believe me looking at the poverty level you cannot even afford the rent today it is dramatic. somebody has to declare this as a national priority. >> i agree i think with the fair housing act there are huge part with access to credit that goes every aspect of life but the responsibility is shared and other communities that we are in a profound crisis. with almost two 1/2 years of the obama administration and forcing the fair housing act.
there is a number of things that are happening around government they also had a huge role to play and you cannot undermine that with the fair housing act with the enforcement at the two agencies it is also a great responsibility for lending institution and we have seen them take the initiative and leadership to address these issues and those that you access from public housing to private housing into credit.
and those that have made this a priority. and a shared responsibility but there needs to be a much more greater focus. >> and with the high foreclosures in the financial crisis how that manages wealth creation in the minority community. and with that experimental program we do not do anybody a favor to relax edit requirements too much. asset growth and wealth creation happens when whole neighborhood going door to
door about what does it mean to have a foreclosed house next to you working class people to have the house next door to be vacant we have to protect them to make sure good credit is extended to those who are creditworthy that has always been a protection for neighbors. do we have to be expensive? but with affordablebl housing goals maybe we go too far we have to betr careful. and worry about minority homeowners. and to keep in mind and at the same time coming with wealth
creation we don't want to think about that way look at the project in st. louis those that were wiped out my own research found and they were torn down public housing which nobody could own anything. we have to be careful to bring in the government to fix the problem they don't have a good track record ofec around what constitutes keeping a neighborhood good? historically that makes it more white. you say absolutely not but there is a lot of evidence. >> no doubt. but we have to make sure anybody that can afford to buy or rent must be allowed based
on their income to do that. >> what is the core of the fair housing act? >> also to prevent discriminationri others say it is implicit with integration think there is a double mandate there is the focus that integration mandate that was left behind or ignored with a very crucial mandate looking at the structural things that are preventing that intervention and we have to remember the fair housing was seeking to address in
remedy what was an important tool for addressing the barrierseo for those who did not fit the status so when i was at doj what we saw was the barrier of disability integration has a broad mandate. >> that level love and heritage well is higher because of generational advance not to make this is only one best social policy discussion but i think it will
take affirmative efforts to createaf opportunity and we prove that and other areas you have to create opportunities. i wonder about what efforts we have going forward to make sure affordable housing. and to recognize there are and to differences in diverse communities with the traditional underwriting standards if you talk about them doing most of those don't have balance sheet so they sell them to fannie mae or freddie mac and those are established by the regulators
so you make a very good point to create another rapid failure like detroit and others we cannot use that as an excuse to the demographics shaping america today it is not white it is to have a minority and how we focus our effort on money used in communities for the right kind of housing stock but it does start at the federal level to take a concentrated effort that this is a crisis to look
at this that i have called on this for years to look at something on this issue to a president who has teeth and we don't have that today and it is getting worse. is the gap is getting wider. >> pro what makes integration happen? and what it was implemented to the greatest extent and for those affluent areas it sounds good.
and to build wealth because they don't own anything. and to have that zoning change at the local level we all understand one of the reasons we have the housing crisis in a rich place like san jose california is because 70% of the community is a single-family home. we have diverse fires not everybody wants that. at the same time the hardest thing to that they should except subsidized housing for people who are much poorer than they are. that is the hardest thing. we make we will be coming to the audience for question so think about them now and condense them down major hand
high. >> and with integration in many communities to be achieved without problems when they are similar in social economics. and how do we sustain immigration? that is what we have had over the many years and to open up zoning to convince these communities and to live in their community that is different than to say to fill the 12 story public housing project. but what we just saw in liberal california the housing bill to override local zoning
and to be voted down and i get should not be that either or proposition and there is the absolutely on the local side where local government do have a goal to do have a goal to so to me doesn't mean the responsibility to enforce that fair housing act and that requires those goals be magan 2009 secretary donovan took us down to new orleans from the response of the hurricane looking at parish after parish and those with nothing left on their lien notes are heavily
concentrated with minorities and flowing to communities at the end of the day talk about westchester county as an example if you can go to lunch with high school you end up with a better education that is a big problem you cannot solve in 25 minutes but we do need to have this focus to be prioritized and people need to call for it not just the 50th anniversary but this is too important for u.s. economy because at the end of the day looking at the generations running this country economy will not be what we wanted to be. as much as psychological as
psychological national association of real estate brokers first for the panel if you could shed some light on the historical role for land for white americans for hundreds of years with the dispositions for developers and then to be successful and to be a little more critical the other thing i would say a
lot of programs came to create suburban america? and this was orchestrated and then 50 or 70 years later now we have so what do you say about that? how do we fix that? like we want to make sure. >> and to offer title i mom mom -- loans to ranchers so as we move forward with this dialogue the reality is we have decades-old disparities
that is involved but reality and to think of public policy to create opportunity and that is the .2 question is using technology and innovation is an equal opportunity equalizer in this field? >> maybe i'm focusing on the wrong thing but i think right now to address the venues for accessing housing in a way that we now cannot remember the percentage but now in terms right now around these issues with a rich concern
about facebook owns ways and to get hosted to receive which ads in the light so that is the negative side of the changing nature of housing and access plays itself out. and with that process to address this problem to be more intentional about it so far be relatively untouched and that has huge quinces on the economy tonight care is a good deal in the private market that is affordable at subsidized housing so city
today and have an opportunity to have you all. what i think about most when i think about the work you've done is that leadership makes a difference and i'm thrilled that every day i get to work at a company where through housing we get our opportunity and our duty to lead is there. i will ask you my first question here which is i look at all the work you've done as to work there are three seminal moments that stick in my mind. the first one is when you got here you were out looking for an apartment and what happened and what inspired you to not just take it but go and do something different? >> thank you for that question. thank you for the opportunity. a couple of things happen.
i have been flying in the reconnaissance business which is a very dangerous business. we were dancing around the open airspace and it won't say we deliberately violated but with intelligence. when you are in that business you got mix on top of you like during the cuban missile crisis and you know that your butt is on the line. because during the cold war we lost over 500 aviators and you feel like you've stepped up when you are called and you come back to the united states and you are married with a baby and you are looking for housing. my options open and i could have been in an apartment, a townhouse or single-family. looking around and being rejected, rejected, rejected in uniform. i went to a place called americana fairfax owned by carl freedman and i walked into the lobby here is a south vietnamese army officer checking his mail so i said well, i walk up to get in a patient and the woman looks at me with impunity and says i'm
sorry but we don't practice open occupancy. that blew me away. i eventually got a place but there were several things that drove me to persist and write letters to try to get the policies reversed. because of the help of an attorney who won the loving case and a good support system including my father was a close friend of the administrator we were able to get traction things turned around. i want to point out also that once i moved into the area near mount vernon off memorial parkway the place where we lived immediately, the people cannot have been nicer when i go out in the morning because i was still doing my morning run at the crack of dawn the police. and they would say someone reported a suspicious person in
the neighborhood and i said if i find anyone who looked suspicious i will let you know. i'm lieutenant campbell and the defense intelligence agency. the other thing is the community of african-american aviators in the navy was a very small closely community and we lost one of our superstars and when his wife called me to tell me what happened i rushed over to the house to console her and another friend was a fighter pilot in came over and so we consoled her and walked out to leave and his kid came up to the passenger side of the car and said mr. campbell, why did my father died? i cannot answer that question. when carol received the flag she was eight months pregnant and i looked at her interface and i
said she could not walk out of that cemetery and buy or rent a house without any hassle. that is just drove me to the edge so i couldn't let this rest. i had to move two years later i thought if i could get a place at the river house next to the pentagon i could at least stop off and have dinner with my family and i walked into the lobby again and i'm told with impunity this is before we had those [inaudible] tests. i'm sorry, sir, we don't practice open occupancy. i wrote a letter to secretary of defense mcnamara a one-page letter asking him to desegregate her house which was 1661 unit and i said it would be inappropriate to do business with the company unless they undulate called it the assistant
secretary and they decided to capitulate. all total just a few letters and a lot of support people have their hearts in the right places we got several thousand units desegregated but i was driven because of hostility and the hair salon to do my wife's hair and the woman, you know, refused and my wife nancy and called the police and the police said you have to do her hair because there's a public accommodations asked. the place for the white police knew the extra for civil rights act. my daughter, they wouldn't let her wade in the water, in a private pool and shut the power off. that is what the environment was like in that. >> fast-forward to for the act
in you testified in front of congress you were in the navy and talk about what your superior officer thought about that and what sacrifice you had to make to go for people to testify. >> let me put that in context. after the bus boycott in montgomery, alabama, doctor king came up to michigan state university and spoke with reverend apathy and told people were demonstrating martin they had a choice between riding in humiliation or walking indignity. i remember that in so that was one of my personal [inaudible] the other thing that worked for an interesting admiral from georgia. admiral steve morrison. his son was jim morrison of the doors and admiral morrison told
me in no uncertain terms he did not want me using my position as a naval officer to advance civil rights. so i said you're talking to the wrong guy. normally i wouldn't wear my white being summertime on my white in my little bitty gold wings and testified in front of the committee and told the senator my story about what i had to do it but it wasn't about that. it was been cloud his resistance and bill norman and the resistance he iran into frank peterson and we all had to adapt and when you travel across the country and you don't know whert because you are black. you didn't know what told segregated and i didn't want to stay in a segregated place so those are the kind of things that drove me.
>> fast-forward, the act is passed and you are working at hud under the secretary and talk about what kind of environment that was like in what it was like to get things done? >> well, i work for a very progressive and committed assistant secretary from kansas from topeka. he was a republican and i had no affiliation at all but he convinced me to come and work for him. he was determined to be very aggressive and turning the place around is used as a secretary from the from michigan had been the neighbor of my first boss from michigan state so he was totally committed and he tried
to use the law to integrate various communities the most famous was warren, michigan. he had john mitchell on board the attorney general but the president of the united states, richard nixon, came out with this turned and said he did not like the idea of forced integration. no one was talking forced integration for the law law of the land. you take an oath to defend the constitution and all the laws but the president -- so, i was out of hud. hud was a very agency and condition. i'm not going to say it was a racist agency but culturally it was racist agency. [laughter] hud built the ghettos of america. i have been in -- i mean, my ex-wife grew up in public housing. i know a lot of great people
physicians and attorneys that came out of public housing so the housing -- >> i came out of public housing. [laughter] >> i'm setting you up. >> i know that. [laughter] >> and because of that experience you have the of what you need to turn all system around. i'm looking at the regulations and they talk about the fha maintaining neighborhood stability which no black okay? it's an education but i'm convinced that secretary romney was probably and i knew about half of the secretaries over the years and i worked with jack kemper is a good friend and -- everybody wanted to do the right
thing but very few people did. secretary romney, i think, went way out and as far as he could go and i respect his legacy but the people were committed to the status quo and hud is the top bureaucracy. let me say this. i've been in washington a few years and there is a force in this town called lobbyists. they generate over 6 billion a year in revenues. i was correctly quoted that at its worst government is about deception and power is about abuse. you don't the change in the demographic patterns because the desire for the change is not there. there are not enough black
people in the united states that scare all the white people that are scared. we don't have enough black folk to scare each other. okay? i don't get it. i never quite understood the resistance to change. a lot of people move with communities because they don't want to raise their children in a segregated environment. they want diverse communities but you look at the resistance. >> let me ask you a question about leadership and going forward. what you did, at least in my view and in the view of many, is that you at the moment at the you can make a difference you took the opportunity. warehousing practitioners this is the work we do everyday how would you advise us as leaders to make more progress in to live up to what the fair housing act aspires to do? >> i will have to put my head on
as an aviator. first thing you do you go into the [inaudible] is you want to know the resistance and the countermeasures you need. a lot of the great leadership challenge comes from edmund burke. all it takes is a triumph of good over evil is for good men to do nothing. you have to commit yourself and i come from a family of ministers and here to pursue justice, embrace mercy, welcome and in two of those i got right. in the navy, you were taught that the first principle of leadership in setting the example. what you do, for example, is obviously a well-earned outstanding reputation and is
same case with fannie mae and every day you have to be challenged. the great psychoanalyst eric erickson said without a challenge you address and so you challenge yourself and say every day in life was a lot different if you wake up in the morning and say what is my challenge today and the challenge may be to hire three people or make sure the system is not clogged up so applications get through and to make the world a better place. so you feel that doctor king wrote his dissertation on death, guilt in meaningfulness and how deep, meaningful and what challenges do you want to take and if people did one tenth of what you are doing the world be a better place. >> i'm not going to stop there. [laughter] like i'm not. >> that's what you wrote.
thank you very much. >> thank you. [applause] >> please welcome bob brain meyer, executive director of the oak park regional housing center and maria torres springer, commissioner of new york city's department of housing and preservation and development. back to lead the conversation, the atlantic chilean white. [applause] >> buspar able to talk about the birds eye view and also we've had personal stories. i want you to discuss a little bit about your role in thinking about her housing and implementing that in your cities. >> good morning everyone. i'm the commissioner of new york city department of housing preservation department and i
work is to advance the housing. in new york where he had set ambitious goals to build and preserve affordable housing. it's about 300,000 homes through 2026. the work we do together with many different sister agencies reflect in many ways what the story is of new york and on one hand it's a story that seems to be one of growth, all-time published high, all-time high in terms of job is to be a city that has an embarrassment of riches in terms of cultural institutions et cetera but it's also a story of too many inequities. it's a story that reflects the story of many cities across this country shaped by a history
legacy, decades of inequities and discrimination. as the 50 years and we spoken about it today after this passage of the fair housing act we believe that our work has to be not just about reflecting on that history, the good and bad, but really about taking it as far as you can in advancing the work in order to create inclusive communities and to promote choice and to make sure that we are increasing access to opportunity for new yorkers. it is grounded really in a balanced approach to major were doing all of the things that we need to do in order to give people the ability to reach a little higher into access opportunities in inputs across the city and we can do that for
a number of programs in changes in zoning that ensure we have affordable housing and higher income neighborhoods while at the same time looking at initiatives for building affordable housing in. that investments in infrastructure and parks and schools and a lot of work to combat displacement because some of the toys that we want to make sure exist in new york is the choice to people to stay and live in neighborhoods that new yorkers have really built. they were there in good times and bad times and so it's a combination of those tools that we hope we don't squander this opportunity that we have to keep furthering this important challenge for. >> can you talk about your work? >> i run a nonprofit organization that exists in oak park, illinois. we started over about 50 years ago at work we do is based on a
mission to achieve meaningful and lasting racial diversity in the community. oak park, if you don't no, it's right next to the city of chicago. reporter it directly to the west and it's about 52000 people in foreign half square miles. it's a moderately dense community and it feels like you're still in the city. the l goes to it so we had to make sure came up plan that is the city of chicago changed on the west side from being basically 90% white and it. that people in oak park recognized it would happen there, too. instead we could do is try to figure out a way to embrace integration so that what that means is not only people from all sorts of diverse backgrounds but today it's about every racial group and we can build a community we all live together. in other words we don't have a segregated community where one group is and another is
somewhere else. that helps us build a community culture around the idea that this should be a place that is inclusive and we should be trying to build more equitable structures and that everyone has a place away come part of our communities. >> let's talk about further housing and current demonstrations decision to push that in mind back and let's talk about why new york chose to do that and what it means to be doing it despite the lack of federal push to do that. >> absolutely. the original deadline for our mission was 2019 and we learned earlier this year that hud chose to display the publication of the rule. we in new york are moving forward because for two main reasons. one is a real recognition on the part of the leaders in city in the community and that this work
of furthering fair housing that this is it is certainly a marathon but what it really is a really. we have now, me and my role has been given and i'm not going to drop it. the work it takes a long time. the decision to delay the implementation of the whole think is irresponsible decision that really pulls back a lot of the progress and lot of the commitment. it is not the time to put the brakes on this one. it does not mean that the work will be easy. we just launched, as mentioned, our comprehensive care housing planning process and we are calling it where we live nyc. it will be two years of not just policy analysis but really engagement with the community.
part of what i think really needs to be central to this work as it has been in so many communities but for us in new york it's a very different context in the neighborhood are very different from each other and different from the present across the country and we need to engage real human beings and what it means for them to live where they live and what that means in terms of access to opportunity and what they want what they believe needs to be done given that experience not just by local government but state local and federal government in order for us to make sure that we have as much as we can converse and livable neighborhoods. they are moving full steam ahead that work and we have already launched the engagement process and at the end of the process in 19 the original deadline our commitment is to make sure that
we will not have just one robust and meaningful process but we will have we committed ourselves to very specific goals and very specific strategies to continue this work. as mentioned have a balanced approach right now and it doesn't mean we have all the answers but it is critical to us that we are really getting our citizens and are as aggressive as possible in the furthering of the work. >> you talk about the goal of sustained integration and how it requires being proactive versus reactive which i think is what ends up happening in a lot of committees. can you talk about how you think about being proactive and what those conversations look like on the ground? >> this is the genius of what we create. when oak park started this work in housing center was created the community was 99% white. the new change happen we knew that we needed to embrace the change in the way that would be beneficial for the community as
well as the new people moving into the community. will we decided to do is instead of come up with the typical only have an enforcement we do have enforcement mechanisms and there's a way to go about that in remedying the situation what we do in addition to that in the housing center is critical to this is we engage people when they're searching for housing and at the beginning of our time we had the whole ownership and rental market. now basically have trained our real estate agencies take on part for us. we deal with the site. we will in that rental situation oak park even though it's a middle-class upper-middle-class trinity it's 45 mental and we have a lot of rental apartments to work with. when people want to move to community they can come to us and talk to us about what they are looking for.
all the landlords in the community with us and give us listings and say what's available and tell us about the apartment so it's like we know what is happening in that apartment. we can people complete and get them exactly what they're looking for and what they can afford and that together. in the process we have to do is deal with implicit bias and what the research shows is something a racial blind spot where even today 45-20 years after we started this process people still moved to oak park and when they first moved to have this idea that it's a diverse place but most places in america are segregated they assume they will be segregated as well. that is constantly happening to us. we have people who are helping them and we don't just say here's your list and go on way but we talked to them for half an hour or so and work through the process with them in here with those reservations are and
we learn about where they're trying to avoid and we can talk them through looking into those parts of oak park as well. this is almost racially -based and has to do with the fact that was wanted by segregated places in the neighborhood in chicago is 90% african-american and there's unity in the west that is 85% white and there's two committees were self that is 60-90% latino so everyone says we must have that pattern within oak park as well and that is not the case. we can talk it through and explain that to them and their initial hesitation and/or ignorance of the parts of oak park that they are avoiding goes away and we can add to the number of options that they would've thought about in the first place and get them to think about moving in a way to sustain our integration or improvement. looking for ways to help people all the time. quickly, if we do that we know
that about 60% of the time they will make a move that will improve our integration. keep them going in improving and if they don't do that and we know that's partly from the data of an venting to provide and they let us know that it's been closed out it happens less than 20% of the time. if it's under 50% of the time segregation is there. have to have this intentional mechanism in place to keep going back before i ask you a few more questions i want the audience to know that will be coming to you for questions so start thinking about them now the party heard my spiel and you can get your hands up and we have microphones in the audience. want to talk to the issue of affordability. we'd be remiss to leave it out. there is a ton of debate out there about what affordable housing that works actually looks like both actual affordability and integrating
communities. i'm wondering how you were thinking about that as you move forward and what is the most successful model for us. >> we are pursuing in new york and, of course, in many cities affordability crisis is quite dire. been in the housing emergency for three decades and it continues with 30% of her renters are severely burdened and more than 50% of their income on rent. we have as i mentioned earlier what we believe to be the most ambitious plan to create and preserve affordable housing. i get asked all the time, affordable for him? does that look like? there is a plan intended to meet the need of the wide variety of families from different income levels. because the need is really dire, not just for extremely low
income families but for working class people in new york city and the firefighters and nurses in teachers who built the city and feel like they are losing their grip on it. thus far a third of the units in the homes we have produced about 88000 so far are for people who are extremely low and income families. the last was 50%. we understand to provide the types of homes for those who are most pertinent. there's a big piece of this given the commitment to her housing that is making sure the homes are built and all the neighborhoods in new york and so there are places where we have land costs are reasonable enough such that those are the projects assembled by our development partners and we provide affordable housing there but one of the key policy initiatives of
the defazio administration which we really believe will pay dividends into the future is our new mandatory inclusion policy so now anywhere in the city that is known for new residential growth has to provide affordable housing, 20 or 25% permanently affordable housing. this is anywhere in the city and of course this means that were able to get affordable housing in higher income neighborhoods so that is a key policy and it pairs with all the work that is happening in other neighborhoods in the city and in part of this is where we are building in lower income neighborhoods and it's not just the housing but a big part of this work is understanding we have to connect about this housing and health and job in parks and the last thing i will say because the affordability crisis in the york
is of a particular type there is a lot of work in tight displacement that you have really been focusing on and providing for lawyers if you're a local resident in housing cores. ensuring that we are combating harassment against landlords who are using unsavory practices so all of those tools come together and it's not and can't work everywhere and i'm sure there are things we still need to do in new york but those are the main lovers were pulling. >> the affordable housing issue in oak park is a more recent phenomenon because over the last ten years for sure it's only become something much more top of mind and the reason for that is again going back to racial integration strategy. that is a situation in which as we came less white and more diverse and integrated we
started to see our property values go up. then they went up in a fairly rapid rate because are creating an immunity that there was much more demand for and we had supply of and in other words there are a lot more people want to live in a place like a park bench oak parts of the world and there are no other parks and a couple other communities in chicago region that are much smaller than oak park like 10000 or 2000 people and there's not a lot of opportunity for people to find a community like oak park. we are we more demand that we have supplied to deal with and what that means is our property values went way up and that has created affordability issues. he has put into place a lot of similar to new york city in response to the folks who dealing with as far as the pressure are folks that are working class to lower class people make between $40080 a year or $80000 a year they won't
get subsidies or other help we have in our affordable housing toolbox that really starts at the federal government it works its way down. of course people above those incomes are able to afford to live in is pretty so we have to figure out how we can afford those in the middle and we have our own housing authority even though it's only for nascar miles in that housing has 500 and it's about 6% of our rental market and that's a really high number for middle-class communities. usually under 1% so to have these mechanisms and to try to figure out what to do from middle income is much harder because there aren't federal ways to format and you have to come up with local and private place to do that and it's a bigger challenge than even the lowest form housing issue.
>> we want to go to the audience. >> hello, linda white, independent researcher, washington dc. we keep hearing integrated neighborhoods are better neighborhoods. i'm an integrationist but we had a lot of all black communities that have thrived such as her terrorists, kingwood park in some locations historically the black town been destroyed with the support of the us government. victory campbell said that even the government so my question is that the federal government is still responsible for the inequity in housing what do you think is the case for preparations for housing? >> does one of you want to take that? >> i can try. [laughter] first i will say that immigration is a great thing and
they're not the only thing. not trying to say every neighbor it has to look exactly like every other neighborhood. there can be variations on what integration looks like and that sort of thing and i think we all feel a lot more comfortable with the civil rights field about the neighborhood that is majority black and were figure out how to make that price versus the neighborhood majority white and that has always happened. it's a hefty list. it doesn't feel like a civil when. whether it's integrated or not we need to figure out is are we bringing people together and live among one another but are we putting the structures in place that will make sure we get the full benefit of that, to. even in oak park after 50 years still working on it. working very hard to continue to improve on our strategy but in most of america if you have segregation also have two separate entities altogether and you have a way different levels of opportunity and way different levels of power and influence
and that really set this up for disaster essentially. it doesn't hurt only the people in the community the don't have the resources but hurts us all prison of pain bigger structural things that cost much more money and create much more disharmony in pain than working together to figure out how to build that back. preparations in my preview is can we do that because that is not only a moral victory but economic for the country and will start to make things work out better. can do the integration by trying to share and leverage the privilege of what people have and take advantage of what is natural for white people and make it natural for everybody. >> i think reparations is on it today. let's begin by thanking our panel. [applause]
>> so, we get to wrap up the conversation on housing equity and what it means and what segregation means and what i want to talk about in this panel is what we really mean and what the real effects are of housing segregation in equity and inequity. i want to start by asking everyone on the panel one
question and when we talk about housing equity what are we talking about? >> today two thirds of african americans live in what would be described low opportunity settings and 40% of black children live in very low opportunity settings and they don't have much in the way of economic mobility because they're living in a place where there tends to be disinvestment in the majority of black kids are in segregated schools and have in this country what i call opportunity hoarding. direct, horizontal competition between high opportunity and low opportunity places we tend to disinvest and over police and have a lot of black kids in schools where no one says it out loud but let's disinvest in the
school and give them the weakest teachers and often teachers who aren't certified to teach what they have and everywhere you turn if you are in a low opportunity settings you are constrained in terms of access to jobs and access to education and access to network. that is what i mean by housing in the. >> we put a lot of this on black students especially. we say the way out is to get a good education and to get through all these things but you are saying this is -- >> the combination of segregation housing and segregated schooling and we have ordered ourselves in a way where schooling is not an engine of opportunity but an engine of a caste system in this country. we like to believe that america
has rising socioeconomic inequality and we have not ordered our society in a way that lives up to our values. >> so, mayor, i want to follow up on that. when we talk about housing equity especially in the context of alexandria what are we talking about? what is it mean to your office and policy? >> affordable housing -- can you reconstruct affordable housing as a top priority in alexandria and were very lucky because it's a core value of the city. in fact right now discussing how to increase dedicated funding for the affordable housing summit which has existed for some 15 years. we have just opened up a new building for about 93 affordable housing unit and it is stunning. it was created by a nonprofit
developer in partnership with the city of alexandria. the drive by the building don't drive by and say there's the affordable housing building and that's not what i want for our city. we must have a place that is noble and appropriate that you can't drive by and say that's the affordable housing building. that's not right. we are committed to doing all we can for this crucial issue is a crisis really for the country. in terms of equity is about fairness that people need housing. for those 93 units, 2000 find us. in the past 20 years we have lost something like 90% of our market rate affordable housing unit in our city and over 12 or
14000 market rate affordable housing units. and this is been because of redevelopment. now what we're doing is reaching out and i've been committed to this for quite a while and partnering with nonprofit developers can take funds from the affordable housing fund which i want to increase and it's like a lockbox and that is what other cities need, too, i hope. that was created so long ago, 15 years ago, and now the community embraces it. as far as education, i mean, clearly though the fair housing act was signed into law in late 60s we are still feeling the effects. we're still feeling the legacy of segregation in this country. we have an ability to write that
wrong. it has taken a long time and is a shame and a dark chapter of our country but now i think is a country we are moving forward and in the city of alexandria i'm fully committed and i think the council that i serve with is committed to it as well. mainly it is the community. the community has a little friction, i think, with some of these redevelopments is making sure that those buildings understandably sit in to the community architecturally or that it doesn't overwhelm and height and density that fits in. you can use the things architecturally like making sure that looks similar to the architecture around and make sure there's a setback at the very top so it doesn't seem as high but that affordable housing
building that i mentioned in the green room was 40% and 60% [inaudible] and it's all affordable housing. what is going to come across the way from this building and i mean 50 feet away is a building that is a market rate building and there are shared amenities. >> i wanted to follow up with you and following your work following the work of your organization for a while and it seems that there housing equity are at the root of a lot of what you do and -- >> i think talking to things. want to go back to about segregation. talking segregation and the history i just want to put it in context for a second. because this is an investment. heard the earlier panels in the
history of the role of the federal government in creating segregated america and this massive investment public housing and requiring racially restrictive covenants to provide mortgage insurance and redlining in support. what that sense is a massive investment in creating a landscape of america we now see it now except as though it is inevitable. anything even about the investment in the interstate highway was made the white suburbs possible $5 million invested in today's money just the interstate and that's a massive and all of these massive investments that went into creating the landscape, the physical landscape, that essentially expresses the racism of the early 20th century. gets 90 feet past the fair housing act by one vote and a week after martin luther king is
assassinated and is past and shame by one vote and it's not like there's this wellspring of desire to break down segregation and there is blood on that there housing act. we get there and now it's 1968 how do you respond to the investment i just talked to. you file lawsuits against active discrimination and suit donald trump and his dad for not renting to black people and you do that and create some of the measures that we talked about you don't do a commensurate investment that balances the investment that was expended to create the landscape that really made this segregated america. still to this day we have not met the investment that requires and the first thing is to think about what would it mean if you wanted to invest in truly desegregating america. the federal government wanted to put 24th office there are number of measures that can be
done in summer being executed and some rolled back in pushing back against them fears the issue of segregation. the second thing i would say is that can't look at housing separate from everything else. housing is connected with almost every other issue we're talking about. cheryl talked about housing and education. didn't have segregated housing and have segregated schools. we know those these are intrinsically connected and we know how that happened we know the supreme court reinforced it 1973 with two cases. one san antonio school district versus rodriguez when you could use property taxes to fund schools and for this program said that you cannot require in to district asking to deal with segregation. it meant that he wanted to engage in white light, you could get away from bussing. we understand that but what about transportation right?
ability. the ability to move around the community. once you get out the large cities in american go to places like baltimore where we spend our energy and work there isn't a rapid transit system get the african-american community back and forth and out to the job at johns hopkins. the largest employer in the state to their credit employees ask offenders can get to the job? and can you get there on time and back home to see her kids after school? no. no real rapid bird patient in the water producing what happened in flint and that's about water portability and water affordability. the work doing is the relationship between water affordability and homeownership in the loss of homes. water tax liens are becoming one of the highest causes of african-americans being foreclosed on because they have these water tax liens and then
your house is sold at foreclosure. they are auctioning homes. have a moratorium for a year in baltimore and flint, if you believe it, regularly raises this issue of foreclosing on homes for water tax liens and it's not portable water there. the question of municipal services and the relationship that and having communities of integrity what it means to be a homeowner and to have the services you need to be able to conduct her home and in order to have a case involving a challenge to the practice of tying municipal services to for payment of cost cost. now affected to the justice system. if you haven't paid your court coffees the municipal utilities will turn off your water and light and so forth. understanding how all these threads bear on the question of equity in housing is important. you have to connected to all the things you need to be able to
ensure that you could pay for your home and your home for services to get to and from your job and your children to be educated and that is at the heart of what we do. >> i want to follow up with you especially about an issue on everyone's minds. you will be participating in the next month the training people are doing and i don't know that their understanding the housing element in doing the starbucks phenomenon nationwide and has access to our increasingly privatized has access to amenities and who's in group and outgroup when it comes to our justice. can you give us a preview and what is your sense of -- >> the reason i agree to try to help help support the effort of
starbucks to do what is their intention to do which is to address this issue of racial discrimination is because we talk about the fair housing act but the civil rights act of 1964 which outlawed racial discrimination and we don't think enough about the reality of that law. first of all, the law the civil rights act of 1964 in today looking out at this room and we all gathered here and came here in ways that would have been very different in 1960. where you could go and what hotel you stayed at and whatever nice outfit you have on whether you could have tried on that outfit in the store that you bought it from and what restaurant you could eat at and whether he could eat in the airport restaurant or wherever you came from. we don't even -- we now accept it like air that had to be
created and that too is unfinished work. the question of who black people are in the public space and the way in which your citizenship and dignity are impeded by your belonging lies at the core and heart of the whole struggle around civil rights. to see what happened to the young young men, we've done this work for long time and numerous cases, denny's and shoney's and we sued after coming in pitch and you can do it that way but this was an opportunity for business that i think they sincerely want to try and grapple with us to think about what if we compelled or expected corporations to take responsibility themselves for the public space. space, by the way, goes your question is not just about what happens inside your story but also what happens outside your
story and how those people interact with this business that exists in a thousand communities. when you create space that is what starbucks has created, up and you come in and your people to sit for long time to write your paper and finish writing your screenplay and your roommate makes too much to his college so you want to finish your paper there and have your business they are and if that's a community space that the public space. we have been contesting about the role of black people in the place of black people in space forever. it implicates all the questions and lastly what does it mean when starbucks comes to your community? it probably means change is coming for a african-american community. [laughter] i talked to my colleagues about what it means you see a starbucks and taking responsibility for that you are in that. >> one more question and then i think i want everyone to give up their questions in the audience. cheryl, you talk in your first
answer about this change in the cycle of disinvestment of how it affects children downstream and it seems to set every generation back a little more and how do you break that chain and how do you break that with every single turn of it brings each generation back a little more? >> each time we think that we have put to bed and anti- black institution he has seen to create a new one, slavery, jim crow, ghetto, these are intentional institutions and the fair housing act has two norms and an integration norm tired the dismantling of segregation. the good news is that there are
more than 400 local jurisdictions that are actively promoting integrated housing. the good news is despite the fact that secretary of hud is trying to delay the further their has a role there are number of jurisdictions that understand the integration when it achieved actually works. it works and you get higher rates of social mobility for children and lower rates of prejudice and you create spaces where people interact with each other more based on familiarity and fear. how do you break it? each generation has to keep fighting the good fight for this idea. perhaps a utopian idea that it is possible to have a robust, multiracial, multi- class,
community that includes rather than excludes. but we need constituents to organize. there is a constituency out there like diversity and wants to put their kids in neighborhoods and schools with a constituency for integration is not organized. meanwhile when you try to do things without organization there is still a lot of anti- black feeling in fear but it's based on people curing their heads. this is not just about starbucks. everywhere you have a gentrifying neighborhood i have students written about this. it's frightening. we have in groups of people who have moved into formally majority black spaces without cultural comfort but we have seen an increase in calls of police mainly by white people who are not comfortable frankly
with a dark skinned black man sitting there with, you know, i thought it was a lie here dude like yours -- [laughter] but the good news is there's expanding the group of what i call culturally dexterous whites that is getting experience with difference liking it and seeing that they are getting comfortable with using the r word and saying that is racism and i disagree with it. we just have to create these kinds of integrated spaces. black folks do have allies. we just need more of them. >> i would add that since 1998 been very proactive about testing guard to their housing act. we have a great office of
housing and i'm really proud of that. second, i often ask myself and it's a rhetorical question but what would doctor king say? what would he say about what happened in charlottesville? what would he say about this conversation and for my part in the late november. sixteen i initiated and wrote alongside our human rights commission in office statement on inclusiveness and the council and i signed it and it's on the poster all across alexandria and it's an english, spanish and arabic. it's been embraced by the city and posted not just in libraries and schools but correct centers and city facilities but also in homes and businesses. basically, it addresses what
that is on don it is simple but yet it is crucial to create that core foundation and housing is a part of that school is a part of that and that is the first things we look at that is right near that new building like what are the reasons why transportation is so important because we are operating on dual tracks with a legal defense fund and with that importance of integrated housing but also helping people in african-american can be have strong faith communities so while
transportation become so important you still want to be able to get to your job that shouldn't be isolated the reason why want to make sure african-americans and minorities to hold onto their homes so it isn't just about creating integrated communities but also ensuring african-american have the tools and opportunities to have the's be strong and sound and environmentally sound have good schools because at the end of the day the school is surrounded by a community and the strength that community determines the strength of the school. so keep those in our head at once people have a right to live in a way that is dignified where they are and also to work to dismantle that segregated landscape one
question over here. i am a volunteer with the arlington virginia partnership for affordable housing. years ago when i became aware of commercial affordable housing offered in our area, we were told it was only for a certain period of time is that generally true with commercially developed properties? if it is how jurisdictions address how we continue to have that many or more and then what happens to a person that gets transition to commercial? can i can alexandria methyl
have a replacement to something as we developed we provide a space for the person who has to leave that site and give them a voucher if they choose to go elsewhere and then we would require the developer only keeps the unit may be 30 years but now it is 40 or longer. i think it was 20 but now 40 or 50 really it is just for the asking also to have a volunteer contribution and
then they will be change but that's a separate conversation left. [laughter] but when they deal just a commercial property having nothing to do with housing we cannot require it in virginia but we have a standard voluntary contribution formula to make a significant natural contribution also alternatively if they are building for unit if they could provide a few units. either way they are participating in this process. >> thank you for that question and we have one more.
>> the question that i have for the panel as a civil rights veteran myself, why now if we have 10000 black elected officials operating in most of the cities most of the school systems are healthcare systems or juvenile justice or judicial system run by black people so why are our children and systems feeling run by our own people if racism was not an issue? >> we lead the nation with the disparity if race is not the culprit and why are we not all suffering equally? >> that is another conference. [laughter] >> my brief answer is i reject out of hand the theory that
because you have a black man now you can and racism because i just described the structural nature and the deep investment that they actually don't talk about whites the premises and racism as an investment so to the investments but then what i talk about like the supreme court decision that are aiding and abetting the happening as a result not to want to attend integrated schools and so until the face the investment nature and the structural nature that is built in we think about racism white and water fountains and we remove that but it is still in the
physical landscape because it was created based on those principles and so until we are prepared to talk about what it will take dismantle that no matter who is your manner it isn't an individual mayor that is responsible but if we began to peel back the structure of baltimore not just what happened but why was he living in that part of west baltimore could he get to a job even if he wanted to on the other side of town? why were they so led poison in the 1990s? when you have to ask those questions so until we deal with the structural piece we will continue old to think that blackface is racism and s not true. [applause] and i can i add just one word to that?
it isn't there but it is get out and the commission said we need to dismantle the ghetto concentrated black poverty is a government institution so that in the quality you talk about the structural consequence of concentrated black poverty a situation that is aberrational only 1% concentrated poverty regardless of race and yes for income black people are participating and are supportin supporting. so there is a class to mention that if you have that structure of concentrated
poverty and not dismantling or actively getting those ghetto communities access will get more of the same. [applause] >> we will invite you to our next conference and i thank you so much for the question we will continue dialogue thank you for all of you another round of applause. >> thank you to all of our speakers today for sharing has been an incredibly powerful conversation also thank you to our underwriter fannie mae to make it possible we have an e-mail survey coming out later today also copies in the room we would appreciate your feedback. thanks for being here we hope