Q: Can Prohibiting Source-of-Income Discrimination Help Voucher Holders?

Q: Can Prohibiting Discrimination Based on Source of Income Help Voucher Holders?

A: Yes. Currently landlords in most places can discriminate against voucher holders, and many do. For example:

This makes it hard for voucher holders to use their vouchers at all, and often keeps them concentrated in a few segregated neighborhoods where vouchers are more readily accepted:

Source-of-Income (SOI) Antidiscrimination Laws Do Help. Three different studies, including one of 48 housing authorities and 2,600 voucher households, found that, all else being equal, the probability of successfully using one’s voucher within the program time limit is 4 to 12 percentage points higher in jurisdictions with an SOI antidiscrimination law.

Also, Black, Asian, and Native American voucher recipients in areas with an SOI antidiscrimination law had 5 to 22 percent more white neighbors than they would otherwise.

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Shelterforce is a nonprofit publication, published by the National Housing Institute. We are not beholden to a particular program, theory, approach, or constituency. We are dedicated to being useful to our readers and to fostering strong, vibrant, just, healthy places for everyone.


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