According to Feministing.com, the U.S. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan announced at the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force’s 24th National Conference on LGBT Equality: Creating Change that it will introduce a new provision prohibiting discrimination against LGBT individuals in federally funded housing programs. This provision also includes same-sex and other types of families- regardless of marital status or status of the adopted children.
And so, first and foremost, this rule includes a new equal access provision that prohibits owners and operators of HUD-funded housing, or housing whose financing we insure, from inquiring about an applicant’s sexual orientation or gender identity or denying housing on that basis. If you are denying HUD housing to people on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity—actual or perceived—you’re discriminating, you’re breaking the law – and you will be held accountable. That’s what equal access means – and that’s what this rule is going to do.
Secondly, this rule makes clear that LGBT families, like the DeShanes, are eligible for HUD’s public housing and Housing Choice Voucher programs that collectively serve 5.5 million people. Third, the rule also makes clear that sexual orientation and gender identity should not and cannot be part of any lending decision when it comes to getting a mortgage insured by the FHA – part of HUD.
I’m proud to announce that this rule will be published as final in the Federal Register next week and go into effect 30 days later.
This is a step in the right direction! I am so happy to hear that a division of the federal government will be recognizing LGBT families as legitimate family structures deserving of the same respect and equal treatment as “traditional” families.