Commissioners honor 50th anniversary of Fair Housing Act

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Chester County’s Board of Commissioners’ proclamation for Fair Housing Month was presented this week, recognizing the 50th anniversary of the Fair Housing Act. Pictured, left to right, are: Commissioner Terence Farrell; Pat Bokovitz, Director of the Chester County Department of Community Development; Jamie Ridge, President/CEO of the Suburban Realtors Alliance; Commissioner Michelle Kichline; T.R. Moser of Moser Construction and Treasurer of the Home Builders Alliance of Chester and Delaware Counties; Dale Gravett, Executive Director of the Housing Authority of Chester County; and Commissioner Kathi Cozzone.

WEST CHESTER — Chester County Commissioners Michelle Kichline, Kathi Cozzone and Terence Farrell joined the nation Thursday, in honoring the 50th anniversary of the Fair Housing Act by proclaiming April as Fair Housing Month.

Signed into law seven days after the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., the Fair Housing Act was the first effective federal law against discrimination in the sale and rental of housing in the United States. Since its initial inception, the protected classes covered have been expanded twice and now include: race, color, religion, national origin, sex, disability, and familial status. The Act is enforced by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), which oversees all federal funding recipients to fulfill their requirement to affirmatively further fair housing.

“Chester County remains committed to affirmatively furthering fair housing,” said Pat Bokovitz, Director of the Chester County Department of Community Development.  “This commitment – from the County Commissioners, the Housing Authority of Chester County and our department – ensures that Chester County residents will have the opportunity to successfully live and work in a safe, stable, and diverse community by building upon previous efforts to administer innovative and effective community service and housing programs.”

One of 49 entitlement jurisdictions in the United States to have an Assessment of Fair Housing approved by HUD, Chester County will continue working to expand opportunity to all by implementing a variety of collaborative actions over the next five years.

As part of Fair Housing Month, the Chester County Department of Community Development and the Housing Authority of Chester County will host a panel discussion about the past, present, and future of fair housing in Chester County on Monday, April 23, 2018, at 3:30 p.m. at the Chester County Public Safety Training Campus, 137 Modena Road in Coatesville. Panelists include individuals with knowledge of fair housing issues with representation from diverse backgrounds. Registration is free and can be completed online at: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/fair-housing-50th-anniversary-tickets-43481582584

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