MHC CALLS FOR SCHOOL DESEGREGATION PLAN FROM STATE OFFICIALS SEEKING JCPS TAKEOVER

The Metropolitan Housing Coalition (MHC) calls upon the Kentucky Board of Education and the Interim State Education Commissioner to commit to implementing a strong and effective school desegregation plan for the Jefferson County Public Schools (JCPS) – a plan that will continue and strengthen JCPS’ efforts to combat the effects of housing segregation in Louisville and achieve diversity in every school. As state officials move forward with proceedings to take over management of JCPS, we are concerned about JCPS’ future in the absence of a demonstrated understanding of racial housing segregation and its impact on schools. With no detailed and effective desegregation plan from state officials to affirm that diversity and equity remain important goals, MHC is compelled to take a formal position opposing state takeover.

MHC has worked tirelessly for over 20 years to promote fair, decent and affordable housing in the Louisville metropolitan region. The extreme residential segregation that continues to plague our city is a principal obstacle to achieving these goals. As demonstrated by research on the history of redlining in Louisvillei and Richard Rothstein’s groundbreaking work,ii housing segregation resulted from decades of intentional public policy at all levels of government. More than 50 years after enactment of fair housing laws, Louisville remains highly segregated. By one measure, it is the fourth-most segregated city in the U.S.iii

Research has repeatedly documented the devastating effects of segregation, particularly for people of color and low-income families. Report after report reveal the deleterious impact of segregation on health, economic opportunity, social well-being, public safety, and educational outcomes for public school students. Segregation is particularly harmful for marginalized groups, but everyone is affected. Nationally, higher rates of racial segregation are associated with lower economic growth for entire metropolitan areas.iv

As part of its effort to roll back decades of segregation in Louisville, MHC has always supported JCPS’ school desegregation efforts, implemented through the Jefferson County Student Assignment Plan (SAP). The SAP was first mandated in a court decree addressing the public schools’ documented history of intentional discrimination against African Americans. The SAP has become a critically important tool to ensure that even as our residential neighborhoods remain highly segregated, our young people will not face compulsory segregation at school. MHC is open to an improved plan to achieve diversity in every school. However, it is important to recognize that housing desegregation did not happen organically. It is a legacy of segregationist housing policy. Efforts to break that legacy will take many years.

MHC applauds the Jefferson County Board of Education’s efforts to continue implementing and improving the SAP, even after being formally released from legal obligations to do so, and despite later court challenges seeking to undo it. Among urban U.S. school districts, JCPS is unique in its commitment to desegregation. Unfortunately, jurisdictions such as Charlotte-Mecklenburg have reverted to highly racially segregated schools after backing away from their commitment to diversity.v

MHC has worked with Louisville Metro government on issues of segregation and affordable housing. Louisville Metro has demonstrated its commitment by funding the Louisville Affordable Housing Trust Fund, appointing a city Chief Equity Officer, implementing the Fair Housing Assessment, committing to Racial Equity Here, and supporting the Redlining Project. MHC calls upon the state to demonstrate an equally strong commitment to dismantling the lasting effects of intentional governmental policies that created segregation. That would certainly be expected as part of any effort to close the student achievement gap and address other racial equity issues in the public schools.

The Kentucky State Board of Education is currently in legal proceedings to take over management of JCPS. If successful, the Jefferson County Board of Education will be relegated to an advisory capacity, and the State Education Commissioner will have sole management authority. This has occurred against the backdrop of statements from the Governor and other state officials suggesting that the Jefferson County SAP should be scrapped in favor of a return to “neighborhood schools,” and a state audit report questioning implementation of the Jefferson County SAP.

Neighborhood schools will be segregated schools, and that is no way to bridge the racial educational achievement gap. We have had neighborhood schools in the past and have seen the discriminatory impact, particularly for students of color and students from low-income families. As a city, we cannot afford to take a step backward.

To date, the Interim State Education Commissioner has not shared his plans for JCPS if the state is permitted to take over the district. There is too much at stake for state officials to remain silent. MHC calls upon the Kentucky Board of Education and the Interim State Education Commissioner to affirm their commitment to school desegregation and their recognition that diversity will not happen organically because of the continuing impact of racial housing segregation policies. In the absence of a detailed and effective school desegregation plan from state officials, MHC opposes state takeover of the Jefferson County Public Schools.
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i Joshua Poe, Redlining Louisville: The History of Race, Class & Real Estate (June 2015, updated Dec 2017), https://www.arcgis.com/apps/MapSeries/index.html?appid=a73ce5ba85ce4c3f80d365ab1ff89010

ii Richard Rothstein, The Color of Law: A Forgotten History of How Our Government Segregated America (Liveright 2017)

iii Alexander Kent & Thomas Frohlich, America’s Most Segregated Cities, 24/7 Wall St. (Aug 29, 2015).

iv Harrison Campbell, Huiping Li and Steven Fernandez, Residential Segregation, Spatial Mismatch and Economic Growth across US Metropolitan Areas, 50 Urban Studies No. 15 (Oct 2013).

v Jennifer Ayscue, Brian Woodward et al., Segregation Again: North Carolina’s Transition from Leading Desegregation Then to Accepting Segregation Now, (forward by Gary Orfield) The Civil Right Project (May 14, 2014)

Thank You For Making the 2018 MHC Annual Meeting a Success!

Thank you to all who supported the Metropolitan Housing Coalition (MHC) Annual Meeting at The Olmsted. Thank you to all of our sponsors—Our Fair Housing Sponsor Wells Fargo, our Foundation Sponsor PNC, and our Keystone Sponsors LDG Development and the Tyler Park Neighborhood Association.

Louisville Metro Council President David James with Jackie Floyd of the Center for Neighborhoods and an MHC Board Member.

We also wish to thank the following sponsors—Our Groundbreaking Sponsors include BB&T, BIA of Greater Louisville, Develop Louisville Office of Housing & Community Development, Habitat for Humanity, Housing Partnership, Inc., Louisville Metro Housing Authority (LMHA), Louisville Urban League/Rebound, Inc., Metro United Way, River City Housing, and Stites & Harbison PLLC.

Advocates Sponsors include AARP, Craig Henry PLC, Jewish Family & Career Services, Kentucky Housing Corporation (KHC), Louisville Affordable Housing Trust Fund (LAHTF), Spalding University School of Social Work, The Weber Group, and Wellspring.

 

Thank you to Richard Rothstein of the Economic Policy Institute for giving the keynote address and Lexington Fair Housing Council for sponsoring the keynote. Also, thank you to Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer and Louisville Metro Council members David James, Barbara Sexton Smith, Rick Blackwell, and Cheri Bryant Hamilton for attending.

 

Guest of Honor Rep. Jim Wayne gives remarks at the MHC Annual Meeting.

And to Council members Bill Hollander and Kevin Kramer who supported the event, but were attending to official duties at a Louisville Metro Council Budget Hearing. Thank you to each and everyone of you who are engaged in the coalition’s efforts for safe, fair, and affordable housing in Louisville.

Representative Jim Wayne was the Guest of Honor at the 2018 MHC Annual Meeting. Thank you to Mayor Fischer for honoring Rep. Wayne’s work in the continuing fight for safe, fair, and affordable housing! Rep. Wayne was instrumental to establishing the Affordable Housing Trust Fund, which has created more than 10,000 housing units for low-income families since 1994 and now has a steady funding source thanks to his persistent support and the support of community advocacy groups.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2017 State of Metropolitan Housing Report officially released – Download here

The 2017 State of Metropolitan Housing Report was officially released Tuesday, December 12th at 12 pm at Metro United Way. This year’s focus was “The State of Affordable Rental in the Louisville Region.” You can download the report by clicking on the bottom link or going to the Reports section on this website: (http://www.metropolitanhousing.org/resources/mhc-reports).

2017 SMHR – The State of Affordable Rental in the Louisville Region

 

2017 State of Metropolitan Housing Report will be released Tuesday, December 12th

What: Official release of 2017 State of Metropolitan Housing Report
When: Tuesday, December 12th, 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm
Where: Metro United Way, 334 E. Broadway Louisville, KY 40202

MHC has been hard at work with University of Louisville’s Center for Environmental Policy and Management (CEPM) working on the 2017 State of Metropolitan Housing Report (SMHR). This year we will focus on renting especially from a regional perspective. We will have more details on the focus topic in upcoming newsletters, but for now, make sure to mark your calendars for December 12th and be there for the release!

Support MHC today (9/14) during Give for Good Louisville

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It’s finally here, the biggest day of local giving, Give for Good Louisville! Give for Good takes place all day today Thursday, September 14th online at giveforgoodlouisville.org

Last year we had our most unique donors yet and raised the most money we ever have. This year our goal is to raise at least $4,500 and have 50 unique donors with a stretch goal of 75 unique donors and $7,500! We can do this!

To give to MHC today, go to the following link and choose an amount or click on donate.

giveforgoodlouisville.org/organizations/metropolitan-housing-coalition-58c45041-3cc3-42f0-a274-cdfd93d4bd20

 

Tell your friends and family to join you in supporting MHC and many other great organizations (there are over 500!) during Give for Good Louisville. If you have any questions, please email michael@metropolitanhousing.org or call us at 502.584.6858.

MHC’s 2017 Annual Meeting: Tuesday, May 30 from 5:15-7:15 pm at the Olmsted

Please join the Metropolitan Housing Coalition for our 2017 Annual Meeting on Tuesday, May 30 from 5:15-7:15 p.m. at the Olmsted, 3701 Frankfort Ave. Louisville, KY

This year’s keynote speaker is Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer

Over his tenure, Mayor Greg Fischer has a long and impressive list of fair and affordable housing accomplishments which include: Louisville receiving a $29.5 million HUD choice grant to transform Beecher Terrace and the Russell Neighborhood; 20-Year Action Plan for Fair Housing; an inclusive Comprehensive Plan process which includes fair housing, affordable housing, health, and sustainability despite not being mandatory; creation of Louisville CARES; funding program work for the Louisville Affordable Housing Trust Fund; research and development of the Redlining interactive map; a the work in west Louisville covering the gap between cost of building new single-family homes in a small area and the initial appraised value of those homes. Local action is imperative, and Mayor Fischer has shown the steady determination to address the issues of fair and affordable housing.

Individual tickets are $70 per person, and there are a variety of sponsorship opportunities available. Dinner will also be served during the event. You can download the flyer below or click on the image to enlarge it.

For more information regarding sponsorships or any other questions, please contact Michael Kolodziej, Development Director, at michael@metropolitanhousing.org or at (502) 584-6858.

2017 MHC Annual Meeting flier

2017 MHC Annual Meeting flier

2016 State of Metropolitan Housing Report is available online!

The 2016 State of Metropolitan Housing Report (SMHR) is now available online, here on MHC’s website.  The report examines nine housing indicators that MHC tracks to assess annual progress on fair housing and affordable housing opportunities in the 13-county Louisville metropolitan area, which includes five counties in southern Indiana.

2016 SMHR Cover

The focus topic of the 2016 State of Metropolitan Housing Report is: “Housing for People Living with Disabilities and our Aging Population.” Our population is aging. We have known for decades that as the “Baby Boomer” generation ages, that group would contribute to an enormous increase in the numbers and proportion of those who are 65 years and older — a figure that currently stands at about 14 percent in the United States. Seniors’ ability to find affordable housing across the U.S. is an increasing challenge. The number of those paying more than half of their household income on housing increased by 34 percent from 2005 to 2014 (Make Room 2016). Providing services to and benefiting from what this age group has to offer are issues all communities are beginning to address in some fashion. Furthermore, as we age, the potential for experiencing long-term disability increases. Attention to the intersection of age and disability is therefore crucial to examining access to fair, safe, and affordable housing.

Click here for a link to the report in PDF: 2016 State of Metropolitan Housing Report

You can access all of MHC’s reports by going to MHC Reports under the Resources section or click here.

2016 SMHR Release Date Announced: Tuesday, December 13th at 12pm at New Directions

It’s that time of year again. Please join MHC for the release of the 2016 State of Metropolitan Housing Report (SMHR), on Tuesday, December 13th at 12pm at New Directions Housing Corporation, 1000 East Liberty Street. Louisville, KY 40204.

Tuesday, December 13th at 12pm at
New Directions Housing Corporation,
1000 East Liberty Street. Louisville, KY 40204

The SMHR is our annual housing report card, and it examines nine indicators of fair and affordable housing progress in the Louisville Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA). This year’s focus topic is “Living in Community: Accessible and Affordable Housing for an Aging Population and Those Living with Disabilities.” Please see below for the event flyer.

2016 SMHR Release Event Flyer

 

MHC working with Mercy Academy students

MHC has been working with students from Mercy Academy for their senior project: “Helping Others Live Mercy.” They will be having a special event “Help Others Live Mercy Night” on Tuesday, November 29th at 7 p.m. at Mercy Academy, 5801 Fegenbush Lane. You can learn more about their work by visiting:

Instagram: H.O.L.M.2017
Twitter: Holm2017
Facebook: H.O.L.M.2017

And click the link to check out this amazing video they made!

 

2016 Annual Meeting a Success!

Annual Meeting Room picture

The Annual Meeting was an amazing success! First off, thank you to our keynote speaker, Emily Allen, Vice President of the AARP Foundation. Ms. Allen’s speech was titled “Housing – the Linchpin of Well-Being,” and there is a link to the full speech below (in PDF format). Also, a big thanks to Kentucky Attorney General Andy Beshear who discussed the Attorney General Office’s new Scam Alerts program and their additional work helping aging adults.

Thank you to the Olmsted for helping us put together a wonderful event. Everything looked beautiful, and the food was delicious!

Of course, the event would not have been possible without the overwhelming support of our organizational sponsors:

Keynote Sponsors
Fifth Third
PNC Bank

Groundbreaking Sponsors
Develop Louisville
Kentucky Housing Corporation
LDG Development
Louisville Metro Housing Authority
New Directions
PBI Bank
Stites and Harbison
Tyler Park Neighborhood Association

Advocate Sponsors
BB&T
Craig Henry PLC
Habitat for Humanity of Metro Louisville
Housing Partnership Inc.
Jewish Family & Career Services
Louisville Urban League
River City Housing
Woodforest Bank

In-Kind Sponsors
Republic Bank
AARP of Kentucky & AARP Foundation

Finally, thank you to our volunteers and to everyone that attended! We hope you will join us next year and the many years that follow!

Here is a link to Emily Allen’s full speech.

EmilyAllen – Full Speech

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