Residents of subsidized housing in Hartford sued the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development Wednesday for violating the Fair Housing Act when it failed to move families to less racially concentrated communities outside of the city.
“Although HUD has a duty to counteract segregation in Hartford, it has instead perpetuated segregation there,” the suit alleges. “Rather than making subsidized housing available to low-income families in places like Farmington or Glastonbury, HUD has disproportionately placed developments in North Hartford and other racially concentrated areas.”
The lawsuit comes two years after residents of a subsidized housing complex in Hartford won a prolonged battle against a notorious New York City landlord and HUD was required to assist residents and move them to new homes. But the new complaint alleges that HUD failed to develop a plan “that would have helped those families move to less racially concentrated, higher-opportunity areas outside of Hartford.”
Instead, the suit alleges that HUD and other housing authorities relocated tenants quickly and without mobility counseling services that could help them to move to higher-opportunity areas. As a result, the vast majority of families “stayed in Hartford or moved to other low-opportunity areas.”
Federal lawsuit accuses HUD Secretary Ben Carson, the City of Hartford and local housing authorities of housing discrimination, Michael Hamad, Hartford Courant, Nov. 18, 2020, available here