By: Leslie Black-Plumeau

March 30, 2017

Please join VHFA and other housing leaders in celebrating April as Fair Housing Month! To honor the importance of Fair Housing activities in Vermont, all are welcome to the State House on Tuesday, April 4th where there will be information in the Card Room all day as well as fair housing experts on hand to answer questions or discuss recent initiatives. At 10 am there will be a reading of a Concurrent Resolution endorsing April as Fair Housing month.

As noted by the Champlain Office of Economic Opportunity,  "April has come to be recognized and proclaimed as Fair Housing Month because the Federal Fair Housing Act was signed into law on April 11, 1968.

On April 11, 1968, President Lyndon Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act of 1968, expanding the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The 1968 act prohibited discrimination concerning the sale, rental, and financing of housing based on race, religion, national origin, sex, (and as amended) handicap and family status.

The federal Fair Housing Act was passed after a long difficult political and social struggle. Advocates in and out of Congress pushed for adoption of a fair housing bill but did not achieve passage until one week after the assassination of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Dr. King's name had been closely associated with fair housing since open housing marches in Chicago in 1966, which he helped organize and lead.

Vermont enacted laws prohibiting housing discrimination in 1987, and with that passage and subsequent amendments, Vermont law now protects against discrimination in housing on the basis of all the federal categories plus, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, and receipt of public assistance."