The Leadership Conference is working diligently to see that Tom Perez is confirmed as U.S. Secretary of Labor. Perez is an eminently qualified public servant and consensus builder who has dedicated his career to ensuring that all individuals are treated fairly and have the opportunity to succeed. He has served with integrity and distinction at the local, state and national level, compiling an outstanding record of achievement.
Housing & Lending
Shelter is a basic human need - and homeownership is a basic key to financial viability. Some of the civil rights issues we look at here are predatory lending, fair housing laws, and homelessness.
March 5, 2009 - Posted by Tyler Lewis
Shanna L. Smith, president and CEO of the National Fair Housing Alliance, presenting findings from the National Commission on Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity report at a February Capitol Hill briefing.
Every year, an estimated four million incidents of housing discrimination occur against African Americans, Latinos, Native Americans and Asian Americans, according to the National Fair Housing Alliance.
However, the private organizations that are authorized to investigate housing discrimination complaints are often working with limited resources.
A federal program called the Fair Housing Initiatives Program (FHIP) provides the funding that allows these organizations to conduct investigations of housing discrimination complaints. The program also funds educational efforts such as outreach to real estate companies, agents, landlords, and consumers about fair housing laws.
However, a recent report by the National Commission on Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity found that while these organizations process the majority of housing discrimination complaints, FHIP has not been funded at a level that allows them to fully perform their enforcement duties.
A bill currently pending in Congress, the Housing Fairness Act, will increase funds for FHIP. It also provides funds for nationwide testing to be conducted every two years to determine patterns of housing discrimination.
February 19, 2009 - Posted by The Leadership Conference
Yesterday, President Obama pledged to reform bankruptcy laws so that judges are allowed to rework home mortgages on family homes to an affordable value. Currently, bankruptcy judges are permitted to modify mortgages on second homes, but not mortgages on primary residences.
February 12, 2009 - Posted by Tyler Lewis
Every week, 6,600 foreclosure proceedings start. That's one every 13 seconds.
The Center for Responsible Lending's website now has a constantly-updated counter showing the number of new foreclosures this year in the United States, as well as totals for each state. The counter is a graphic reminder of how severe the mortgage crisis is. The foreclosure data is based on Mortgage Banker Association figures.
February 10, 2009 - Posted by Tyler Lewis
Check out a video of President Obama from last night's speech in Elkhart, Ind., on the status of the economic recovery plan. Obama answers a question about whether or not a bill currently pending in Congress that would give bankruptcy judges the ability to adjust mortgage payments for struggling homeowners would. You can also read the transcript.
January 27, 2009 - Posted by The Leadership Conference
Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner
Tim Geithner was sworn in as treasury secretary yesterday evening having been confirmed earlier that day by the Senate in a 60 to 34 vote. As treasury secretary, Geithner will serve as the principle economic advisor to President Obama, advising him on how best to manage the federal government's economic policy, at a time when the nation is dealing with a mortgage crisis and a recession.
January 15, 2009 - Posted by Tyler Lewis
December 12, 2008 - Posted by The Leadership Conference
December 8, 2008 - Posted by The Leadership Conference
Today, the National Commission on Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity released The Future of Fair Housing, a report of their findings and recommendations following an investigation of the alarming state of U.S. housing in the wake of the subprime housing debacle.
Their recommendations include the creation of an independent fair housing enforcement agency as well as strengthening existing fair housing programs and increasing public education.
The national, bipartisan commission is co-chaired by two former HUD secretaries, Henry Cisneros and Jack Kemp, and was formed by a partnership of LCCR/EF, the National Fair Housing Alliance, the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, and the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law.
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