U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) – ranking member of the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs – today released the following statement after Secretary Ben Carson of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), posted a new anti-civil rights rule online that undermines the ability of victims of housing discrimination to seek justice under the Fair Housing Act. HUD’s final “disparate impact” rule will make it all but impossible to root out policies and practices that have a discriminatory effect based on race, family status, disability, or any other protected class under the Fair Housing Act:
“This is yet another example of this Administration doing everything it can to turn back the clock and eliminate the protections civil rights leaders fought for. The Administration’s Disparate Impact rule will make it harder for victims of discrimination – whether because of their race, disability, the fact that they have children, or other protected characteristics – to seek justice and equal opportunities to thrive.”
The final Disparate Impact rule has not yet been published in the Federal Register, but is available on HUD’s website here.
The Disparate Impact final rule is only the latest in a series of actions taken by the Trump Administration to dismantle fair housing protections. On September 8, HUD’s new rule gutting communities’ Fair Housing Act obligations to take steps to affirmatively further fair housing took effect. Brown condemned the “AFFH” final rule stating that “it’s a dark day for the country when the President boasts about maintaining housing segregation, and the agency charged with carrying out the Fair Housing Act becomes a tool to help him do it.”