Re: Outcomes and Fair Housing Laws and RANT warning...
From: Greg Nelson (
Date: Wed, 12 Aug 2009 15:16:02 -0700 (PDT)
Diane writes:

> Did you get this message from the FIC? I'm not sure it went out over  
> Cohousing-L.


> We are writing to notify you of changes to the Communities Directory  
> and possibly to your community's listing as a result of the FIC's  
> efforts to comply with Fair Housing Laws.
> [...]
> In addition to modifying survey questions we are required to remove  
> potentially illegal content from community descriptions

Now is it just me, or does anyone else feel that this just plain STINKS?

I am HUGELY in favor of the concept of Fair Housing.  We are actively
working to try to make units in our community that are affordable to
lower income families, because we want to encourage diversity and
because we think that good quality, energy-efficient, low-VOC housing
should be available to everyone.

But I don't understand why is it okay for someone to be able to
research the demographics of a *city* they might want to move to (you
can find out all kinds of things from the Census and other sites) and
yet ILLEGAL for them to receive that information about a *cohousing
community*?  It seems to me that a community *providing* information
about itself is vastly different than a community *requesting*
information about prospective residents.

Surely people want to know, before wasting their time visiting and
attending meetings, if the community is all older or younger than they
are, or has only singles or no singles or... exactly the kind of
information we're being told can no longer be made available.  It's
not like the information isn't there if someone wants to find it.

I personally think that someone ought to take the gag-order aspects of
the Fair Housing Laws to court as violating freedom of speech.

Greg Nelson                     email:  ghn [at]
White Hawk Ecovillage           phone:  607-273-2576
Ithaca, NY 14850                web:

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