Bias of historic redlining in Springfield plain as day on map (MassLive)

Below is an excerpt from an article published by MassLive on April 30 about the history and origins of housing discrimination in Massachusetts and the nation. Community Legal Aid’s Nuri Sherif authors the article.


The Fair Housing Act became United States law in 1968 in order to end discrimination in the home rental and buying markets. Over the past 55 years, the act has fallen short of its purpose. From October 2021 to September 2022, the U.S Department of Housing and Urban Development received 11,741 complaints of discrimination across the country.

The Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination received 427 complaints about discrimination in state public and private housing markets from October 2022 to September 2023.

Not only is the act supposed to address discriminatory housing practices that have already happened, it also requires that HUD-funded organizations take “meaningful actions … [to] overcome patterns of segregation and foster inclusive communities.” This is what HUD and fair housing programs nationwide call Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing. In theory, the act’s enforcement measures and mandate to address systemic inequities should together end housing discrimination.

But this has not yet happened, including in Massachusetts.

Read more at MassLive.