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Illinois Concludes National Fair Housing Month

Courtesy photo: IDHR

CHICAGO – The Illinois Department of Human Rights (IDHR) and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity (Region V) concluded National Fair Housing Month with an educational event on housing equity. The event’s theme was “Building Inclusive Communities: How Illinois’ Source of Income Protection Expands Equity in Housing.” The Monday event featured HUD’s Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary Richard J. Monocchio; HUD’s Regional Administrator Diane M. Shelley; Illinois Deputy Governor Grace B. Hou; IDHR Director James L. Bennett; and other public officials and housing stakeholders who spoke about the importance of source of income protections in housing.

“I have worked in human services all my career and have met too many community residents striving to find safe and stable housing,” said Deputy Governor Grace Hou. “Their stories inspire and remind me that all levels of government need to unite with community organizations to ensure that all families have equitable opportunities to find homes of their choice, in communities where they can thrive. I was honored to join HUD and IDHR to share Governor Pritzker’s steadfast vision for Illinois where homeless is brief, rare, and non-recurring.”

Earlier this month, Governor JB Pritzker proclaimed April to be Fair Housing Month in Illinois, highlighting the federal and state fair housing laws that promote fair and equal housing opportunities for Illinoisans across the state. View the proclamation on IDHR’s website.

“As we celebrate Fair Housing Month, let us recommit to the fundamental principle that every person deserves access to safe, affordable housing free from discrimination,” said HUD’s Great Lakes Regional Administrator Diane M. Shelley. “Together, let's continue our work to ensure that fair housing is not just a promise, but a reality for all.”

"Housing is a human right, and every Illinoisan deserves access to housing free from discrimination,” said IDHR Director Jim Bennett. “Our Fair Housing Month celebration showcased Illinois’ proactive leadership. We’re expanding and enforcing housing protections on behalf of our most vulnerable residents, and I am proud of the work my team leads to make this happen.”

IDHR has worked with the Governor’s Office, members of the General Assembly, and housing stakeholders to expand the Illinois Human Rights act to include protections against source of income discrimination, effective January 2023. Additionally, Illinois law prohibits discrimination in housing regardless of a person’s race, color, ancestry, national origin, sex, disability, religion, familial status, marital status, pregnancy, age, military status, order of protection status, arrest record, orimmigration status.

During the event, Representative La Shawn K. Ford (D-8) was presented with the “Outstanding Legislator Award” for his work in advancing fair and affordable housing in Illinois. Representative Ford championed the bill that became Public Act 102-0896, which prohibits source of income discrimination in housing.

“Adopted by a grandmother under arduous circumstances and as a former teacher and coach in the Chicago Public Schools, I am committed to advancing access to fair housing in Chicago and throughout our great state” said Representative La Shawn K. Ford (D-8). “As a legislator and a licensed real estate broker, I am proud to play my part in helping to eliminate source of income discrimination so that Illinoisans and their families can find a home of their choice.”

For additional information about the event or to view Governor Pritzker’s video greeting, visit IDHR’s event page at dhr.illinois.gov/fair-housing-month.
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