Welcome to the newest feature on our blog, “Talk of the Town.” This feature will highlight a housing issue that’s under discussion in our nation’s capitol and around the country, and invite you to weigh in with your thoughts and experiences. This week’s topic is housing discrimination.
Housing Choice Vouchers, also known as Section 8 vouchers, are intended to provide low income renters the opportunity to live in the neighborhood of their choice while paying an affordable, subsidized rent.
Last week, the New York Times reported that in Lancaster, California, local officials were taking action against the Section 8 voucher program and those who use vouchers. On “Tell Me More” yesterday, NPR correspondents dug deeper into the issue, exploring how discriminating against voucher holders can be a proxy for discriminating against people on the basis of their race.
Discrimination in housing for using a voucher or other subsidy for rent payment, known as source of income discrimination, is pervasive enough that many communities have passed laws outlawing the practice (PDF).
Do you see source of income discrimination in your community? Has your community passed laws to combat this problem? How well have those laws worked? Have you experienced source of income discrimination yourself? Discuss it with us in the comments.