The Fight for Fair-Chance Housing Ordinances
Date:  06-15-2019

People with a criminal history are often denied housing, no matter how long ago the conviction took place
From Curbed:

When Willette Benford was released from prison earlier this year, she knew that finding housing in Chicago would be a struggle. She didn’t have a steady job and was staying on a temporary basis at a homeless shelter—and friends who’d been released from prison in the past told her that no landlord would rent to someone with a felony conviction on their record.

It didn’t matter, Benford says, that the conviction had been the result of a domestic violence dispute that occurred more than two decades earlier, or that Benford was given an immediate release from prison when Illinois updated its domestic violence laws. Too many landlords in the city, especially those who rented affordable housing, had “blanket ban” policies that would cause them to deny her outright.

“People don’t know the whole story,” she says. “They just look at the paper, and they’re immediately afraid. They don’t know the details, and they just make the assumption that everyone’s still guilty. Then they deny you housing, which is just a basic necessity—and then where else are you supposed to go?” Continue reading >>>