By Joanne Zuhl
Portland Housing Commissioner Nick Fish’s office has released the locations cited in a recent fair housing audit as testing positive for racial housing discrimination.
The announcement comes following a spate of reports on a survey that 32 out of 50 fair housing tests on Portland rental units showed evidence of discrimination against race and national origin. The survey was commissioned by Nick Fish’s office and conducted by the Fair Housing Council of Oregon.
“Today we are releasing the names of the landlords where there is a positive test,” Fish said. “We have previously notified the landlords that they were subject to an audit, and there was a positive test. Landlords have been notified.”
Fish said that next week his office will be forwarding all the information on the Fair Housing audit to the civil rights division of the Bureau of Labor and Industries, the lead state agency for processing HUD fair housing complaints, for them to initiate enforcement action.
“I made a commitment to our community,” Fish said. “First I expressed outrage at the results. Second, I said that we would pursue a comprehensive action plan that would include enforcement of the law. We are taking aggressive steps to hold landlords accountable for alleged violations of our fair housing law. In the weeks ahead, I will be announcing a bold plan to address discrimination in housing in our community. I will be the first housing commissioner who has framed housing discrimination as a bureau priority, and we intend to take a number of very strong steps to end bias in rental housing.”