NYC Launches Effort to Study and Reduce Housing Segregation
In January, the Department of Housing and Urban Development delayed the implementation of the Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing Rule, an Obama-era anti-segregation measure rule, until 2020, saying, “HUD believes that program participants need additional time and technical assistance to adjust to the new AFFH process and complete AFH submissions that can be accepted by HUD.” The measure compelled participating jurisdictions to prepare an Assessment of Fair Housing (AFH), which would outline the ways in which cities could correct segregation in housing.
Even though the Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing rule was delayed at the federal level, New York City intends to go ahead anyway. HPD, in partnership with the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA), recently announced the initial kickoff of Where We Live NYC, a comprehensive fair housing planning process to study, understand, and address patterns of residential segregation and how these patterns impact New Yorkers’ access to opportunity–including jobs, education, safety, public transit, and positive health outcomes.
Where We Live NYC will include extensive community participation on all aspects of the process, as well as data and policy analysis that will culminate with the release of a public report with measurable goals and strategies that are designed to foster inclusive communities, promote fair housing choice, and increase access to opportunity for all New Yorkers. In a statement, HPD chair Maria Springer-Torres called the plan “an unprecedented opportunity” that will allow the city to “take a comprehensive look at the historic and ongoing factors that contribute to longstanding patterns of segregation in our neighborhoods, and discuss what we as a city can do to increase housing choice and access to opportunity for all New Yorkers.”
The engagement process and report development will follow a three-phased approach:
Learn (spring/summer 2018). HPD will work with the Fair Housing Stakeholder Group, residents, and government partners to understand existing conditions, begin data analysis, and prioritize the factors that contribute to fair housing issues in New York City, such as discrimination and access to opportunity.
Create (fall 2018). HPD will work collaboratively with partners to generate ideas for policy solutions based on the information and contributing factors prioritized in the Learn Phase.
Finalize (2019). HPD will work with partners to develop an initial policy framework that takes into account all input from stakeholders, research, and resident engagement, and will share this initial draft with the Fair Housing Stakeholder Group, residents, and government partners for feedback, with the final draft scheduled for completion in fall 2019.