Identifying and Addressing Racial Discrimination

March 20, 2014 - 10:55am
Kathy Pettit, Rob Pitingolo

Moderator: Diane K. Levy, Urban Institut

Differential treatment of people based on race, ethnicity and other personal characteristics remains a boundary to opportunity for many.  In the housing realm, we know that constraints on housing choice due to outright or subtle discrimination can have real effects on families’ ability to access neighborhoods of opportunity and build wealth for the future.  The forms of discrimination are not a static.  How discrimination happens can change over time and efforts to identify and address it likewise must prove nimble.      This panel brings together experts engaged in documenting and addressing discrimination based on race and ethnicity.  The papers draw from a national, paired testing study of discrimination in US housing markets and legal cases filed by bona fide homeseekers who were discriminated against over the telephone.  Another paper considers data that will become available to analysts once changes to the Home Mortgage Discrimination Act reporting requirements go into effect.  New data should better support efforts to identify differential treatment in home mortgage lending.  Together, the papers shed light on the ways in which people are treated differentially in today’s housing markets and raise questions about what tools we might need, in addition to complaint-based legal responses, to help policymakers, advocates and citizens address and reduce discrimination.

  • Housing Discrimination against Racial and Ethnic Minorities: Findings from the HDS 2012 Report
    Margery Turner, Urban Institute; Rob Santos, Urban Institute; Diane Levy, Urban Institute; Doug Wissoker, Urban Institute; Robert Pitingolo, Urban Institute; Claudia Aranda, Urban Institute
  • Linguistic Profiling and Discrimination in Housing Markets and Lending Institutions Based on Racial Inferences from Telephone Calls
    John Baugh, Washington University in St. Louis
  • The Future of Home Mortgage Disclosure Act Data and Implications for Understanding Discrimination
    Kathryn Pettit, Urban Institute