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September 30, 1997

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President Clinton and Vice President Gore Meet with the Race Initiative Advisory Board and Announce New Efforts to End Housing Discrimination

Addressing the second meeting of the Advisory Board to the President's Initiative on Race, President Clinton underscored the importance of continuing the dialogue on race. To that end, the President announced a December 2, 1997 town hall meeting. And while the dialogue continues, we must also enforce the laws that are already on the books. Today, the President announced a HUD initiative to step-up efforts to end housing discrimination. Also on today's agenda, the Advisory Board will hear from noted scientists and demographers who will share their research on the changing population patterns and attitudes on race, working toward meeting one of the Initiative on Race's goals of educating the nation about the facts of race in this country.


At the President's direction, Housing Secretary Andrew Cuomo will announce today that the Department of Housing and Urban Development will double its efforts to fight against housing discrimination.

  • Doubling the Number of Enforcement Actions Taken Against Housing Discrimination -- Since the President took office, the Administration has investigated 16,325 housing complaints, taken enforcement actions on 1,085 cases, reached out of court settlements on 6,517 cases, and collected $17.8 million in compensation for victims of housing discrimination. In the next four years, HUD will double the number of housing discrimination enforcement actions.

  • Reaching out to States and Local Organization to Step up Efforts to Promote Fair Housing -- HUD will issue $15 million in grants to help 67 private, non-profit housing groups reduce housing discrimination. These grants will be used to investigate allegations of discrimination, provide housing counseling and education, and promote fair housing.

  • HUD Will File Civil Charges of Housing Discrimination in Four Separate Cases -- These cases show that housing discrimination is not a thing of our past, but an outrage that still exists today. Action by HUD on these cases illustrates three principles: people who break the law must be held accountable; sends a clear message that these kinds of actions will not be tolerated any time, anywhere; and puts a human face on discrimination.

Five Goals of the President's Initiative on Race

  • To articulate the President's vision of a just, unified America;
  • To educate the nation about the facts of race in this country;
  • To promote constructive dialogue to work through the issues of race;
  • To encourage leadership at the federal, state, local community and individual levels to bridge racial divides and;
  • To identify and develop solutions in critical areas such as education, economic opportunity, housing, crime and health care.

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