We attend a lot of meetings throughout the county to observe, learn, and educate others about what is happening in Lake County.
On 10/23/17, we attended a meeting at Lakeland Community College’s Holden Center to learn about the role of Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing in Lake County.
The Department of Housing and Urban Development established the rules of AFFH. From their website we learned the following:
- “Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH) is a legal requirement that federal agencies and federal grantees further the purposes of the Fair Housing Act. This obligation to affirmatively further fair housing has been in the Fair Housing Act since 1968 (for further information see Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968, 42 U.S.C. 3608 and Executive Order 12892).
- HUD’s AFFH rule provides an effective planning approach to aid program participants in taking meaningful actions to overcome historic patterns of segregation, promote fair housing choice, and foster inclusive communities that are free from discrimination. As provided in the rule, AFFH means “taking meaningful actions, in addition to combating discrimination, that overcome patterns of segregation and foster inclusive communities free from barriers that restrict access to opportunity based on protected characteristics.
- Specifically, affirmatively furthering fair housing means taking meaningful actions that, taken together, address significant disparities in housing needs and in access to opportunity, replacing segregated living patterns with truly integrated and balanced living patterns, transforming racially and ethnically concentrated areas of poverty into areas of opportunity, and fostering and maintaining compliance with civil rights and fair housing laws. The duty to affirmatively further fair housing extends to all of a program participant’s activities and programs relating to housing and urban development.”
We have a non-profit in Lake County that has the mission of ensuring compliance with the AFFH law. Their name is the ‘Fair Housing Resource Center’ and they are located at 1100 Mentor Avenue, Painesville, OH 44077
Here is their website: http://www.fhrc.org/About-Us.html
It is our understanding that the main source of their revenue is the Community Development Block Grants (yet another Federal Program). [we will put on our “to do” list to review their financial statements]
“The Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Entitlement Program provides annual grants on a formula basis to entitled cities and counties to develop viable urban communities by providing decent housing and a suitable living environment, and by expanding economic opportunities, principally for low- and moderate-income persons. The program is authorized under Title 1 of the Housing and Community Development Act of 1974, Public Law 93-383, as amended; 42 U.S.C.-5301 et seq.”
Here are some interesting statistics about Lake County —-(note population by race) We will discuss the significance of those figures after the chart.
At the Lakeland meeting back in 2017, Ms. Patricia Kidd, Executive Director of the Lake County Fair Housing Center, stated that the 93.5% concentration of white people is problematic for her, and she would like to see Lake County have a population diversity like the Shaker Heights community.
We did some research on diversity in Shaker Heights, and here is what we found. “The population of Shaker Heights, OH is 53.1% White, 34.1% Black, and 5.87% Asian. 10.4% of the people in Shaker Heights, OH speak a non-English language, and 95.3% are U.S. citizens.”……we could see no mention of their veteran status, political affiliation, or who likes what flavor of ice cream….
We found a website that provides the diversity percentage in the United States:
“The United States is home to a population of 323 million people, from which 93% are citizens. The ethnic composition of the population of the United States is composed of 197 million White residents (61.1%), 57.4 million Hispanic residents (17.8%), 39.7 million Black residents (12.3%), 17.3 million Asian residents (5.37%), and 7.77 million Two+ residents (2.4%). The most common foreign languages in the United States are Spanish (38.7 million speakers), Chinese (3.1 million speakers), and Tagalog (1.68 million speakers), but compared to other places, the United States has a relative high number of French (1.28 million speakers), and French Creole (786,770 speakers).”
Note to Ms. Kidd – If you want to achieve your Utopian mix of the people in Lake County, you will need to add ~174,609 non-white people into Lake County to achieve the racial balance that you desire. That assumes, of course, that the number of white people remain. [214,712 / 53.1% = 404,354 – 229,745 = 174.609 non-whites needed]