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Habitat News

Habitat Frames Fair Housing Act Discussion at National Civil Rights Museum

National experts will discuss progress, obstacles and future opportunities

MEMPHIS, Tenn., June 21, 2018 — Habitat for Humanity of Greater Memphis will bring together a panel of housing policy and community development experts at the National Civil Rights Museum on Tuesday, July 17, at 3:30 p.m. for Building the Beloved Community: A Conversation About The Fair Housing Act to discuss the 50th anniversary of the Fair Housing Act, including the successes, challenges and work that remains ahead to ensure everyone has access to decent, affordable housing.

The Fair Housing Act, part of the Civil Rights Act of 1968, was approved by President Lyndon B. Johnson, just seven days after the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in Memphis at the Lorraine Motel. The groundbreaking legislation “protects people from discrimination when they are renting, buying, or securing financing for any housing. The prohibitions specifically cover discrimination because of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, disability and the presence of children. (hud.gov)”

The panelists include:

  • David Bowers - vice-president and Mid-Atlantic market leader for Enterprise Community Partners, Inc., whose work includes facilitating affordable housing and community development transactions and policy implementation in collaboration with public and private sector stakeholders;
  • Dr. Kathryn Edin, professor of sociology and public affairs at the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University and author of Coming of Age in the Other America (with Stefanie DeLuca and Susan Clampet-Lundquist), and $2 a Day: Living on Almost Nothing in America (with Luke Shaefer);
  • Dr. Christopher Herbert, managing director of the Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University, whose recent work has had a particular focus on efforts to promote and maintain homeownership for low-income and minority families;
  • and Kalima Rose, vice president for Strategic Initiatives at PolicyLink, who played leadership roles in standing up and implementing the federal Sustainable Communities initiative, the new Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing rule, and key equitable development initiatives in New Orleans’ Katrina recovery.

The discussion will be moderated by Areva Martin, author, philanthropist, multi-award winning civil rights attorney, and a regular contributor on CNN, Good Morning America, and ABC World News Tonight. She is a nationally recognized women’s rights advocate and one of the nation’s leading thought leaders on issues of race, politics, women’s issues, the law and breaking news. Areva’s third book, Make it Rain: How to Revolutionize Your Business and Brand, hit book shelves in March, 2018.

“This crucial legislation directly influences Habitat’s work to ensure everyone in our community has access to decent, affordable housing,” said Dwayne Spencer, president and CEO of Habitat for Humanity of Greater Memphis. “We couldn’t miss this opportunity during our 35th anniversary to bring together thought leaders to discuss where we are now, 50 years after this act was signed, and the work that remains ahead.”

For more information about Building the Beloved Community: A Conversation about the Fair Housing Act or to register to attend, visit www.memphishabitat.com/FHAforum. This event is free and open to the public, but registration is required. RSVPs to attend the event are due by noon on Wednesday, July 11.

Building the Beloved Community: A Conversation about the Fair Housing Act is sponsored by IBERIABANK, First Tennessee, Wells Fargo, Morgan Stanley Wealth Management, Patriot Bank and Pinnacle Financial Partners.

Local companies, organizations and individuals interested in learning how they can support Memphis Habitat’s next event can contact Cameron Sanford, donor relations manager, at csanford@memphishabitat.com or 901-322-3532.

About Habitat for Humanity of Greater Memphis
Habitat for Humanity of Greater Memphis partners with people in our community to help them build or improve places they can call home through new home construction, rehabilitation projects and Aging in Place accessibility and mobility modifications for seniors. Since 1983, Memphis Habitat has helped more than 490 first-time homebuyers secure affordable mortgages and completed rehabilitation and home modification projects in partnership with more than 350 local homeowners, helping them achieve the independence they need to build a better life for themselves and their families. For more information, visit memphishabitat.com.

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Posted by Kim Morrison at 9:00 AM
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