THE OPPORTUNITY AGENDA APPLAUDS HUD’S NEW FAIR HOUSING RULE

On February 8th, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development issued new regulations to better enforce and apply the Fair Housing Act across our nation. The regulations affirm, in particular, that policies and practices that have an unjustified discriminatory effect, known as “disparate impact,” violate the Act. HUD is the principal federal agency charged with enforcing and interpreting the Fair Housing Act, which prohibits housing discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status or national origin.


Public Opinion on Social Issues and Public Policy: 20 Charts you should see (Part 1)

From immigration reform to God and the Superbowl, public opinion matters and these charts give you the headlines you should know if you care about or work on social issues. 

By Eleni Delimpaltadaki Janis 

Significant Gains in Support for Citizenship for Undocumented Immigrants 

 


Taco Cid Using Ethnic Humor to Diminish People


Image courtesy of nbclatino.com

By Laura Cahue

Columbia, SC — Some initially thought there might be a tongue-in-cheek message when the owner of Taco Cid in West Columbia outfitted her employees with offensive T-shirts about undocumented immigrants. Well, there wasn’t. If anything, she seemed to believe that gimmicks will grow her business, noting that the T-shirts are “witty” and for sale.


Advancing Home Opportunity on Capitol Hill

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Speakers at the Jan 22 Capitol Briefing (From Right to Left): Nancy Zirkin, Alan Jenkins, Nikitra Bailey, Janis Bowdler, Sharon Pratt, and James Carr. 


On January 22 I spoke at a Capitol Hill briefing entitled “A Compact for Home Opportunity: What America Can Do to Stop Foreclosures, Restore Communities, and Fulfill the American Dream.” Sponsored by The Opportunity Agenda, the National Council of La Raza, and the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, the forum brought together experts from the Home for Good Campaign with congressional staffers working on national housing and economic policy issues. The other speakers and I addressed a very full room. Here’s what I said:


Lost In Translation


A gathering of the North Charleston community to inform them of the latest changes in South Carolina's immigration policy. Photo courtesy of Lydia Cotton

By Lydia Cotton

As a liason to South Carolina’s North Charleston Hispanic community, I assess the needs of the community and do my best to provide resources to meet those needs. One of the dominant questions is about access. Being lost in translation is a consistent issue that comes up in Hispanic homes in my area. Often, I ask these families why communication is such a problem. The answer usually is, “Miss Lydia, they [agencies, government, organizations, churches, businesses] do not understand what I’m saying. They don’t understand my situation.” These are communities that function in Spanish and are doing their best to learn English. The waiting list for English classes is sometimes long and they are not always accessible to those that need them most.


Watch Your Mouth! Ten Phrases that Progressives Should Retire in 2013


Watching our mouths should be this year's top resolution

Along with the usual New Year’s resolutions about exercising, getting more sleep, and being more patient with the kids, progressives should add better communications to their list. We have an historic opportunity to frame the public debate this year in terms of social justice, human rights, and opportunity for all. But that requires being smarter and more deliberate in the way we talk about the nation’s priorities and future. At the very least, we need to stop using certain words and phrases that erode support for progressive values and policies. Here’s my list. I’ll ask for yours at the end of this post.


DeMarco Must Go


Edward DeMarco (above) at a lecture at Vanderbilt University 

This article appeared originally at ourfuture.org

It’s time for President Obama to fire and quickly replace the Acting Director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), Edward DeMarco, with a Director who will uphold the Agency’s mission to “support housing finance and affordable housing, and support a stable and liquid mortgage market.” DeMarco, a holdover from the Bush administration, is interim head of the FHFA, which currently oversees Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.


Making The Invisible Visible

Photo courtesy of Julio Salgado 

Download Press Release 

“The immigrant youth movement is on point. There’s a commitment for LGBT folks to be represented at every level of our movement,” says Project Coordinator of the Queer Undocumented Immigrant Project (QUIP), a project of the United We Dream Network based in California, Jorge Gutierrez. He speaks of creating a platform where LGBT families are included within the larger immigration policy reform discourse and the need to uplift the stories of undocumented LGBT immigrants in addition to same sex couples where one is a citizen and other is not (also known as bi-national couples) which have received some mainstream media attention.


Redrawing the image of the LGBT community in the American mind.

 

Photo courtesy of Zap2It

 On November 6, 2012 the American people reached new historic milestones. Not only did we re-elect the first African-American president, we also elected the first openly gay indivudal to the U.S. Senate, Tammy Baldwin (D-WI). We also elected four new openly gay individuals to the U.S. House of Representatives, bringing their total to 6, a record for that chamber of Congress. Currently, there are more than 530 openly gay elected officials in the U.S, according to the Victory Fund.  


South Carolina Decision Underlines Need for Immigration Reform

This article was originally posted at The State 

By Rev. Sandy Jones

The U.S. District Court’s order blocking key provisions of South Carolina’s extreme anti-immigrant law is a step toward what the election confirmed is America’s real aspiration and need: comprehensive federal immigration reform.


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