One Equal World

American Mortgage Diversity Council Holds Conference on Housing Protections for LGBT Folks

Posted on: December 8, 2017

The logo for the American Mortgage Diversity Council.

More than half of America’s states don’t have protections for LGBT identities in their housing discrimination laws. Same-sex marriage is legal nationwide, but a queer person in Texas, Tennessee, New Hampshire, or 27 other states could come home from their honeymoon to a perfectly legal eviction notice on their door. It’s worse for transgender individuals, as only a few states have language that explicitly includes them in legal protections.

On Thursday, December 7th, the American Mortgage Diversity Council, supported by Bank of America, hosted a roundtable conference in Dallas, Texas to discuss legislation that includes sexuality and gender identity in Fair Housing Act protections.

The council also discussed instituting programs that encourage LGBT home ownership, particularly programs at the federal level. This would also include a training program about unconscious bias for industry professionals in loans and realty.

“This round-table Town Hall connects the leaders of the Dallas LGBT community into a collaborative dialogue with the leaders of the mortgage banking and financial services industry to shed light on the challenges facing all facets of their community in an effort to ensure that diversity and inclusion remains a top priority,” said John Rieger, the Executive Director for the American Mortgage Diversity Council.

The reason why it needs to be a top priority is apparent in the words of Neil Cazares-Thomas, Senior Paster at the inclusive Cathedral of Hope:

“It is imperative that the full power of the banking industry is both seen as being diverse and supporting the many causes that support the fight of discrimination and stigma that is seen in the LGBT community, which leads to homelessness, issues with addiction, and other social needs.”

The American Mortgage Diversity Council intends this to be the first of many such roundtables held in cities around the country. In each, it will loop local LGBT resource centers and educational programs in with banking professionals and experts in property loans.

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1 Response to "American Mortgage Diversity Council Holds Conference on Housing Protections for LGBT Folks"

I don’t see much hope for help at the federal level for the next three years, so I’m happy to see industry taking the lead. That is a powerful step! Thanks for sharing.

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