The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has awarded nearly $2 million in grants to Michigan fair housing organizations, the department announced Thursday.
The funds were disbursed to confront violations of the U.S. Fair Housing Act and combat housing discrimination. HUD gave nearly $40 million to fair housing organizations across the country.
“HUD is committed to supporting efforts to rid discrimination from our society,” HUD Secretary Ben Carson said in a statement. “The grants we are awarding will enable our fair housing partner organizations to combat unlawful policies and behavior and foster practices that ensure everyone has access to safe, affordable housing, free from discrimination.”
The grants are provided through HUD’s Fair Housing Initiatives Program and Fair Housing Assistance Program, which support fair housing enforcement, education and outreach.
The Grand Rapids-based Fair Housing Center of West Michigan was awarded $425,000 total from HUD. It was given $300,000 for an initiative that will provide fair housing enforcement and services in 12 West Michigan counties to people within federally protected classes. The project aims to detect, address and remove systemic barriers to fair housing choice and equal housing opportunities.
The Fair Housing Center of West Michigan was also given $125,000 for fair housing education and outreach services that involve providing materials to members of the housing industry in areas of rental and real estate sales as well as to people within federally protected classes.
The Kalamazoo-based Fair Housing Center of Southwest Michigan was given a total of $423,605 for enforcement and education and outreach-related services.