Skip to content

To Root Out Segregation, Biden Must Tackle Evictions

Evictions perpetuate the cycle of residential segregation. So why aren’t they addressed in a new proposed fair housing rule from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development?

An apartment maintenance worker changes the lock of an apartment after constables posted an eviction order in October 2020 in Phoenix, Arizona. 

An apartment maintenance worker changes the lock of an apartment after constables posted an eviction order in October 2020 in Phoenix, Arizona. 

Photographer: John Moore/Getty Images North America

The Biden Administration’s recent efforts to combat housing discrimination will fall short if they do not address eviction. On June 10, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) reintroduced the Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH) rule to reverse increasing levels of segregation in American cities. But the rule does not mention, much less target, eviction. If the Biden Administration is serious about rooting out discrimination in rental housing and reducing segregation, it must incorporate eviction into its new fair housing rule.

The AFFH rule is intended to actively promote integration and equal housing opportunity. Although this rule was proposed by the Obama Administration in 2015 and nixed by the Trump Administration in 2018, the Biden Administration believes that the policy is critical for achieving their goals for housing equity. The new policy will require local governments to demonstrate that they are taking "meaningful action” to promote fair housing markets, free from discrimination.