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LACCM Awarded Grant from FHIP

October 4, 2005

Press Contact:
Robert Nasdor
Executive Director
Legal Assistance Corporation
of Central Massachusetts
(508) 752-3722 ext. 3011

The Legal Assistance Corporation of Central Massachusetts (LACCM) has been awarded a $220,000 grant under the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Fair Housing Initiatives Program (FHIP). The grant, announced Thursday, will enable LACCM, in partnership with the City of Worcester, to conduct investigation and carry out enforcement activities to prevent and eliminate discriminatory housing practices in Worcester County.

“This is a substantial and important grant that will help many victims of housing discrimination who have been unlawfully denied housing of their choice,” said LACCM Executive Director Robert Nasdor. “We look forward to working with the City of Worcester on this crucial project.” LACCM and the City of Worcester, through its Office of Human Rights, developed the Worcester Fair Housing Project in order to investigate housing discrimination claims and provide legal information and support to victims of housing discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, disability, familial status, or national origin.

“I commend LACCM and the City of Worcester for this impressive initiative to help victims of housing discrimination learn about their rights and obtain effective remedies,” said Senator Edward Kennedy. This timely federal grant is well-deserved and will enable this initiative to reach out to even more people who suffer unfairly from this shameful discrimination.”

“I'm very pleased that HUD has recognized the outstanding work being done by Legal Assistance and the City of Worcester to eliminate housing discrimination,” added Congressman Jim McGovern. “With housing costs continuing to skyrocket in Massachusetts, it's essential that we eliminate all barriers - including discrimination - that prevent families from getting the housing they deserve. That's what the Worcester Fair Housing Project is all about.”

The Project staff will investigate claims of housing discrimination and will refer cases to HUD. As part of its effort to deter the unlawful behavior and reach victims of discrimination, the Project staff will also create, translate, and distribute fair housing brochures and flyers throughout the county and run education workshops for certain groups of vulnerable residents, including the homeless, the elderly, and the disabled.

“This announcement is another step toward ensuring that Americans have equal access to safe and affordable housing,” said HUD Regional Director Taylor Caswell. “We will not allow discrimination to stop families from living in any home, apartment or neighborhood they can afford.”

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