Directions: You will need to watch the video "A Matter of Place" for this assignment.
This movie was created by the Fair Housing Justice Center and is 27 minutes long. There are two parts to this assignment. Part 1 will ask you to fill in answers while watching the movie. Part 2 will involve answering questions and applying course material. Make sure to complete both parts of the assignment.
PART 1: MOVIE QUESTIONS (10 points)
A. Steve and Michelle are searching for an apartment in which city?
Answer: New York City
B. In Steve and Michelle's case, how many people viewed the apartment they were interested in?
Answer: They were the first people to view the apartment because the other couple scheduled to see it couldn't make it due to the storm.
C. What did the receptionist tell Steve and Michelle was broken when they came in to fill out their application?
Answer: The photocopy machine (the copier) was broken.
D. In the 1950s, potential homeowners had to put large amounts of money down on their homes, generally ___50 (fifty)____ to ___80 (eighty)____ percent.
E. What percentage of the home loans during the 1950s were given to white Americans.
Answer: 98% (Ninety eight percent).
F. From 1965 to 1968, more than ___a hundred (100)____ northern cities erupted in riots.
G. What did the Fair Housing Act of 1968 do? (1 point)
Answer: They outlawed discrimination on the basis of race in housing transactions.
H. What word was written on William's rent bill?
Answer: The word "Fag" was written on William's rent bill.
I. How did William's management company respond to the renter's complaints of harassment?
Answer: They said they are working on it and said they were going to fire him and after all the paperwork is done, William will be the first to know. But they never called, and William never got a response.
J. How did the court rule in William's case?
Answer: The Jury ruled in favor of William.
K. Developers get more tax credit if they develop in what income neighborhoods?
Answer: High poverty, low income neighborhoods.
L. What is a housing choice subsidy/voucher?
Answer: A federal Housing voucher program offers low income recipients the freedom to choose housing in other areas. It's a program the federal government runs with states and localities that provides people a rental subsidy that allows them to access housing in the private markets. Housing choice subsidies can reduce concentrations of poverty. They offer recipients the opportunity to find housing in any area as long as the subsidy covers the rent, but exercising that choice is sometimes extremely difficult. M. Why are housing vouchers often difficult to use?
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Answer: It is often difficult to use because the source of income discrimination is prevalent in the housing industry, it is discrimination based on an individual and family's source of income. Even though in the last decades there is an increase in the states and localities having laws that state that you can not discriminate based on the source of income, many housing providers still do so. N. What does HASA do?
Answer: HASA is a part of HRA (Human Resources Administration) which stands for HIV/AIDS Service Administration. It helps inflicted patients find housing if they are homeless, medications and medical assistance. O. Describe the living conditions when Keith moved in.
Answer: The living conditions weren't healthy. It wasn't in proper physical condition. It was a one-bedroomed apartment in Brooklyn. There were roaches in the kitchen and on the floors as if an exterminator came in and killed the roaches. There were somebody's clothes in the apartment. The stove was not connected to the wall and outlet sockets melted onto the floor. The place was in no condition to be inhabited.
P. What is the purpose of "testing"?
Answer: The purpose of testing was to see how real estate agencies react and behave with people who were on programs as opposed to how they dealt with people who weren't on programs. The idea behind testing is that they send out matched pairs of applicants to find housing. It's a tool used to Fair Housing Organizations to investigate housing discriminations.
Q. Does research demonstrate that testing is effective or ineffective?
Answer: Research demonstrates that areas where more Fair House testing has been carried out and complaints and lawsuits brought, there is a diminishing of incidents of housing discrimination. So, it has been effective.
PART 2: ANALYSIS (15 POINTS)
11-12. What is side effect discrimination? Apply it to the topic of housing discrimination.
Answer: Side effect discrimination is a type of unfair treatment of an individual or a group in one sector of society (institutional area) which leads to negative effects in another sector of society. For example: Discrimination occurring due law may influence discrimination occurring in the place of education. In this case, due to legal rules being passed that allowed white people to easily achieve house loans and move out to nicer areas, discrimination followed when people of color tried to find nice housing even when they could afford it.
13-14. What is past-in-present discrimination? Apply it to the topic of housing discrimination.
Answer: Past-in-present discrimination occurs when discriminatory actions that were once legal is no longer legal in current times. However, despite the action now being made illegal, its effects are still prevalent and the once discriminated group still feels the impact. This was very obvious in the topic of housing discrimination because despite people of color being protected by Fair housing law against any seclusion, renters still preferred white tenants and made it harder for people of color to apply for houses.
15-16. The Fair Housing Act makes it illegal to discriminate against someone in the housing market based on several different personal characteristics. What characteristics are included in the Fair Housing Act? (if you didn't catch the list in the movie, simply google this!) List at least two other characteristics that you think should be included and explain why.
Answer: The Fair Housing Act prohibits discrimination in housing because of:
- National Origin
- Familial Status
At least two other characteristics that I think should be included in the list are:
1) Profession: There are many workers who earn a living today in professions that were non-existent a decade ago. Websites like Youtube, Instagram, etc. has paved ways for influencers to make a living by vlogging which is something that isn't recognized as a proper job today. So, a lot of agencies refuse to rent out apartments to digital content creators.
There are also professions that are considered immoral in society such as prostitution or working as an adult dancer, and they require safe housing too, and because they are excluded, it is easier for them to be exploited.
2) Sexual orientation: There is still very prevalent discrimination against the LGBTQ making it difficult to find housing as America is dominantly a Christian country. The Fair housing laws need to include LQBTQ so they can live in a safe environment.
3) Recovering Drug abusers: Recovering addicts are seen as immoral people in society and are often rejected and disposed due to their past ways which make it easier for them to relapse into their old ways. They need a stable, safe environment where they can rejoin society as a sober, productive member so the Fair Housing law should cover them.
The last questions will ask you to apply scenarios to Merton's typology (all weather bigot, all weather liberal, timid bigot, and reluctant liberal) and to distinguish between individual and institutional discrimination.
17-19. Scenario #1: Bob does not like Asian Americans and does not want them to live in his neighborhood. As a result, he refuses to rent his home to an Asian American.
17. Which of Merton's categories would best describe Bob? (All weather bigot, all weather liberal, timid bigot, or reluctant liberal?
Answer: Bob is an "All weather Bigot".
18. Explanation of why you selected that category:
Answer: Bob is categorized as an "All weather Bigot" because he is prejudiced and he's acting on that prejudice by taking part in discriminatory actions.
19. Is there any discrimination occurring in this scenario? Explain. If so, explain whether it is institutional or individual discrimination.
Answer: There is discrimination occurring against Asian Americans because they are not being allowed an option that is simply due to physical factors that are out of their control. They are being discriminated for their race, and people of other races are being allowed an option that they are excluded from. This is Individual discrimination, because the person carrying out the discrimination is Bob, who is an individual and it is his own choice. The legal system of the country has no part in it so this can not be institutional.
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20-22. Scenario #2: Mentor Community Bank prides itself on being open minded and believing all people have the right to own a home wherever they choose, regardless of race. However, the bank uses an outdated loan rating system (based on current residence address) that makes it difficult for nonwhites to receive loans. They do not want to update their system because it would cost a significant amount of money. However, the new system is the standard in banking and all nearby banks use the new system. A recent audit study shows that 95% of qualified white applicants were offered a loan, but only 40% of qualified nonwhite applicants were offered a loan. The bank knows this outdated policy puts nonwhites at a disadvantage, but management decided it would be too costly and time consuming to upgrade.
20. Which of Merton's categories would best describe Mentor Community Bank? (All weather bigot, all weather liberal, timid bigot, or reluctant liberal?
Answer: In this case, Mentor Community Bank can be considered an "Reluctant Liberal".
21. Explanation of why you selected that category:
Answer: Mentor Community Bank is not prejudiced because it prides itself on being open minded and wants to serve everyone equally. However, despite of them knowing that their system is discriminatory and giving white people an unfair advantage over people of color, they are refusing to update their system due to the costs thus discriminating against people of color. This puts this in the category of "Reluctant Liberal".
22. Is there any discrimination occurring in this scenario? Explain. If so, explain whether it is institutional or individual discrimination.
Answer: There is discrimination occurring because white people, based on their race, are receiving an unfair advantage over people of color. 95% of qualified white applicants were offered a loan while only 40% of qualified nonwhite applicants were offered a loan, and the basis that they make the decision on is current residence address which gives white people an edge. This is institutional discrimination because Mentor Community Bank is an organization and they are discriminating against a group of people based on their race. This isn't one person discriminating, instead it's a whole establishment.
23-25. Scenario #3: Marcelle is a Realtor with Northwood Realty. She has very negative attitudes about gay and lesbian individuals and is not afraid to share them with anyone interested or willing to listen. However, Michelle values her position as a realtor and knows that she must treat all clients equally regardless of their sexual orientation (company policy). As a result, Michelle makes sure to provide equal services and treatment to all customers at work, regardless of their sexual orientation.
23. Which of Merton's categories would best describe Marcelle? (All weather bigot, all weather liberal, timid bigot, or reluctant liberal?
Answer: Marcelle is a "Timid Bigot".
24. Explanation of why you selected that category:
Answer: Despite Marcelle being prejudiced against the LGBTQ, she does not discriminate against them, thus making her a "Timid Bigot".
25. Is there any discrimination occurring in this scenario? Explain. If so, explain whether it is institutional or individual discrimination.
Answer: There is no discrimination occurring in this scenario, because Marcelle, as a realtor, is providing equal services and treatment to all customers at work, regardless of their sexual orientation.
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