Obama administration announces new housing segregation rules

President Barack Obama’s chief of urban housing policy has announced new nationwide rules aimed at fulfilling the 1968 Fair Housing Act by promoting racially integrated neighborhoods.

Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julian Castro said Wednesday in Chicago that “federal efforts have often fallen short.” The news conference was held next to new public housing units on the city’s South Side.

The 1968 law required cities that receive federal housing money to promote equal opportunity and access to housing regardless of race, origin, religion, sex or disability.

The new rules provide guidance to help cities achieve that mandate, as well as data on integration and segregation patterns, racially and ethnically concentrated areas of poverty and areas of high housing need.

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The department says the rules will be implemented in phases.

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