The National Fair Housing Alliance (NFHA) released data showing the number of housing discrimination complaints rose to a record high during 2022.
The NFHA found there were 33,007 fair housing complaints received last year by private nonprofit fair housing organizations (FHOs), the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), Fair Housing Assistance Program (FHAP) agencies and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), a 5.74% jump from the 31,216 complaints filed in 2021.
FHOs processed 73.94% of complaints, compared to 5.80% by HUD, 20.15% by FHAP agencies, and 0.11% by the DOJ. The NFHA noted an untold number of complaints are not registered out of fear of retaliation or eviction, while other cases go undetected or unreported because they are difficult to identify or document.
“This year commemorates 55 years since the landmark Fair Housing Act became law,” said said Lisa Rice, president and CEO of the NFHA. “We have come a long way since then, but the findings of our latest Fair Housing Trends Report indicate that we still have a long way to go in dismantling unfair systems that are driving racial wealth and homeownership gaps, economic inequality, and structural barriers for people of color, people with disabilities, women, immigrants, certain religious groups, and LGBTQ+ individuals.”
Rice added, “It is especially concerning that the numbers are trending upward for discrimination complaints involving victims of domestic violence, who are often already burdened with navigating the legal system. Now, these women, men, and children, through no fault of their own, have to bear the consequences of an abuser impacting their ability to secure housing or remain housed.”