Greater Baltimore Community Housing Resource Board, Inc. (GBCHRB) December, 2004 / Vol.10, No. 6

FAIR HOUSING NEWS

A newsletter about Fair Housing, community development, and neighborhood quality of life




HOLIDAY GREETINGS!

Contact us for a free copy of any mentioned article or a free subscription to Fair Housing News: 410-453-9500 / 800-895-6302 / mail@gbchrb.org. More info/resources: http://www.gbchrb.org.

IN THE NATIONAL NEWS


Refusal to Rent to Families with Children Costs Chicago Landlord $30,000. A September 13, 2004, consent order filed in United States & Wardiani v. Chlypniacz requires the landlord to pay $30,000, attend Fair Housing training, and obey the law. The landlord refused to rent to a family with three children. A complaint was filed with HUD, which subsequently investigated, attempted conciliation without success, and then filed a discrimination charge. (National Fair Housing Advocate, September, 2004:6)

Pew Hispanic Center Report Finds U.S. Latinos Experience Race Differently. For Latinos, self-identification as white appears to be a reflection of economic success and a sense of inclusion. While 48% of Hispanics self-identified as white and 2% as black (2000 Census) and 6% self-identified as of 2+ races, 43 percent chose "some other race." Hispanics who self-identified as white in the Census have higher levels of education and income and greater degrees of civic enfranchisement than those who pick the census category of "some other race." In short, Hispanics see race as "a measure of belonging, and whiteness as a measure of inclusion, or of perceived inclusion." Latinos' self-identification as white, or not, does not exclusively reflect skin color or hair; race is also related to alterable characteristics such as economic status and civic perceptions. ("Shades of Belonging" by Sonya Tafoya, Released December 6, 2004, www.pewhispanic.org)

Realtor Study Finds Homebuyers Increasingly Favor Shorter Commutes, Walkable Neighborhoods. The prospect of lengthening commutes is presumably leading more "to seek walkable neighborhoods in close-in suburbs and cities," according to the 2004 American Community Survey sponsored by the National Association of Realtors and Smart Growth America (www.smartgrowthamerica.com). A commute time of less than 45 minutes is the top priority in deciding where to live for 79%. Other top priorities include: easy access to highways (75%) and having sidewalks and places to walk (72%). Having a large house on more than one acre of land is important to 57%. (www.realtor.org)

Study Finds Different Local Impacts of Fair Housing and CRA Advocacy. The HUD-funded study of Minneapolis and Denver found the impact depended upon the local situation. Partnerships and educational strategies proved most effective in Denver, while protest and lobbying was used in Minneapolis. (Cityscape, Vol. 7, No. 1, 2004:135-163)

International Civil Rights Walk of Fame Opens in Atlanta. On September 14, 2004, a new, permanent exhibit which shows the footprints of important civil rights advocates was unveiled at the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic Site in Atlanta. The exhibit has the cemented footprints of Ralph David Abernathy, President Jimmy Carter, Thurgood Marshall, Medgar Evers, Rosa Parks, and others. The King Historic Site (pictured here) is definitely worth a look: www.nps.gov/malu/index.htm.


IN THE LOCAL NEWS

Carroll County Mobile Home Park Sued by Baltimore Neighborhoods, Inc., for Racial Discrimination. The suit filed on October 6, 2004, alleges that the Park's owner treated black and white testers differently, including telling a white housing was available and black that it was not. For more info, contact BNI at 410-243-6007 or email fairhousing@bni-maryland.org. (BNI News, Baltimore Neighborhoods, Inc., Fall, 2004:3)

CALENDAR

The 2005 Immigration Forum & Legislation Reception Will Be Held on Wednesday, January 19th from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. The event - sponsored by the Governor's Commission on Hispanic Affairs, the Governor's Commission on Asian Pacific American Affairs, the Maryland Commission for Women, and the Maryland Office of New Americans - will be held at the President's Conference Center, Miller Senate Office Building, Annapolis. Info: 410-767-8952.

Interfaith Dialogue Series of the Baltimore Jewish Council Continues with March 1st Forum. The Jewish-Muslim-Christian interfaith dialogue "Raising Religious Children in a Secular World" will be on March 1, 2005, from 12:00 noon to 2:00 p.m. at the Park Heights Jewish Community Center, 5700 Park Heights Avenue, Baltimore. Reservation only. For information, call or email Jenine Cullum at 410-542-4850 or jcullum@baltjc.org.


DID YOU KNOW?

Smart Growth America's Web Site Features Resources, Newsletter, Links, & Much More. Smart Growth America is a diverse coalition of nearly 100 nonprofit organizations with a stake in how metropolitan expansion affects our environment, quality of life and economic sustainability. The web site has the latest research in Smart Growth initiatives, resources, a great newsroom, and their excellent Smart Growth Around America newsletter. (http://www.smartgrowthamerica.com)

The National Home Ownership Rate is 75.9% for Non-Metro Areas, 74.6% for Suburbia, and 52.0% for Central City Households. According to the Census Bureau's Housing Vacancy Survey, the homeownership rate was at a record high for both rural and urban households in the second quarter of 2003 (the most current source of data). (Research Works, October, 2004:2)

The National Association of Realtors Web Site Has Useful Data, Reports, and Resources. The site includes data on existing home sales, forecasts, industry & consumer surveys, and public policy news. (www.realtor.org)

Contact the GBCHRB for FREE Fair Housing Informational Brochures & Posters. Brochures on Fair Housing rights are available for free in the English, Spanish, Korean, and Russian languages. Copies of the GBCHRB's Neighborhood Beat are available in digital format, and soon on our website! Info: 410-453-9500 / 800-895-6302 / mail@gbchrb.org.

The GBCHRB's Neighborhood Beat TV Show Is on Cable Stations Throughout Maryland! Hosted by Dr. Bill Kladky, the 30-minute interview show runs on Channel 21 in Baltimore City, 99 in Anne Arundel County, 71 in Baltimore County, 3 in Carroll, 3 & 7 in Harford, and cable systems in Calvert, St. Mary's, and other counties! Call us at 410-453-9500 for days and times!



BOOK TO READ

Freedom's Sword: The NAACP and the Struggle Againast Racism in America, 1909-1969. by Gilbert Jonas & Julian Bond. Routledge, 2004. 416pp. $14.97. Interesting chronicle and analysis of the NAACP's first 60 years fighting racism. Includes an excellent summary of the Civil Rights Movement, as well as mini-biographies of the major players.



REST IN PEACE

Sister Mary Paul Lee, Oblate Sister & Advocate, 75. The granddaughter of a slave owned by Jesuit priests, Sister Mary Paul became an Oblate Sister because no Philadelphia order would accept her because of her race. Chairwoman of the Baltimore Archdiocese's Urban Commission, Sister Mary Paul commented, "I worked in many ethnic neighborhoods - with the Polish and Italians, where people just didn't deal with black people, so some were very threatened by me. But when I retired, each of the churches in those neighborhoods sent me a photo album and thanked me for what I had done for their church and their school." Sister Mary Paul received numerous honors, including the Baltimore Archdiocese's Martin Luther King, Jr. Award. The Oblate Sisters of Providence were founded in Baltimore in 1828 by a French Sulpician priest and a mulatto Caribbean immigrant, and were the first permanent African American Roman Catholic sisterhood in the US. (Baltimore Sun, December 8, 2004:15B)

Joseph L. Perry, Educator and Advocate, 88. An Xaverian brother, Perry taught at several schools in the Baltimore area. He tried to integrate Mount Saint Joseph High School in 1943. When the school rejected his request to admit Black students, he left the religious order. In 1999, Mount Saint Joseph (http://www.msjnet.edu) gave him its President's Award, with citation reading, "Your faith in God called you to prophetic deeds at a time in our history when few truly understood the sacredness of all persons. Today, Mount Saint Joseph celebrates your legacy - to foster an interracial community of young men striving to appreciate the richness of their differences." Amen. (Baltimore Sun, December 3, 2004:5B)