TOPEKA - In celebration of the 44th anniversary of the 1968 landmark Fair Housing Act, Governor Sam Brownback has proclaimed April Fair Housing Month in Kansas. The Fair Housing Act is the federal law prohibiting discrimination in the sale, rental and financing of housing based on race, religion, national origin, sex, disability and familial status.
"Equal housing opportunity is a serious issue, and it's important that we raise awareness of Kansans' rights and responsibilities regarding housing." said Gov. Brownback. "Everyone deserves the opportunity to find a safe place to live, and that's why I'm proclaiming April 2012 as Fair Housing Month."
View Governor Brownback's proclamation designating April 2012
as Fair Housing Month in Kansas.
Throughout April, local, state and federal organizations will reach out to inform the public about fair housing laws. Many cities and counties will adopt fair housing ordinances and issue proclamations. Others will offer fair housing seminars for tenants, landlords, property managers, lenders, social workers, service providers and other interested parties.
On April 10th, Housing and Credit Counseling, Inc. of Topeka (HCCI) will offer a seminar on the "Basics of Fair Housing" and another on the "Best Practices of Landlords." The cost for each class is $50. For both sessions, the fee is $75. The classes will take place in the HCCI Conference Room located at 1195 SW Buchanan in Topeka. For questions, contact Teresa Baker at 785-234-0214, ext. 322. View HCCI's flyer here.
On April 26th, the City of Olathe Human Relations Commission is conducting a Fair Housing Workshop for landlords, owners, tenants and property managers. The workshop will cover landlord and tenant responsibilities, federal, state and local housing law, and what to do if you suspect housing discrimination. The free workshop takes place at City Hall located at 100 E. Santa Fe in Olathe. Please RSVP by April 24th by calling Victor Glover at 913-971-6493. Lunch and refreshments will be provided.
On April 27th, the City of Salina Human Relations Department and the Salina Housing Authority will host the "Fair Housing Seminar 2012" in Room 202 at the Bicentennial Center located at 800 The Midway in Salina. Presentations will cover the Fair Housing Act, minimum housing codes, and disabilities, reasonable accommodations and service animals. The registration fee is $15. Payment must be received by April 24th. To register, contact Miki Orr-Muths at 785-309-5745. View the flyer here.
Kansas Housing Resources Corporation (KHRC), a self-supporting, public corporation that administers federal housing programs on behalf of the State of Kansas, oversees the Fair Housing Team which consists of representatives from the Kansas Human Rights Commission, Kansas Department of Commerce, Kansas Department of Health and Environment and other fair housing organizations across the state.
New for 2012, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
(HUD) and the National Fair Housing Alliance
have launched of a series of public service advertisements (PSAs) designed to teach individuals and families how to recognize and report discrimination. The campaign includes new print ads in English, Spanish and Chinese, and two sets of radio PSAs in English and Spanish.
The PSAs portray people who experienced housing discrimination and encourage those who suspect discrimination to report it to HUD. To read more about the campaign, visit HUD's website.
To view the new print ads or listen to the radio spots, click here.
The Fair Housing Team is committed to ensuring fair housing opportunity for all Kansans and equal access to housing-related programs and services by diverse populations. The Team seeks to inform housing providers and consumers about fair housing rights and responsibilities, encourage state-funded housing providers to promote fair housing choice and enlist decision-makers to advance the cause of fair housing. For more information, visit KHRC's website
Any person who believes they are the victim of housing discrimination should contact the Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity at www.hud.gov/fairhousing
or call the Housing Discrimination Hotline at 1-800-669-9777 (Voice) or 1-800-927-9275 (TTY).