Fair Housing Center of West Michigan

The Fair Housing Center of West Michigan is the front door to housing choice, ensuring everyone has equal opportunity to choose housing that's right for them. We work to prevent housing discrimination, remove barriers that allow it to persist, and restore housing choice when discrimination happens.

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Upcoming Events

Tester Training

6 - 8pm

If you are interested in taking on the challenging and rewarding role of a tester, register to attend an upcoming training session over Zoom.  Our comprehensive tester training sessions are held on a regular basis.

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Little Things Shouldn't Matter: Fair Housing & Familial Status Discrimination

1 - 2:30 PM

This training will provide a brief introduction to fair housing laws, the protected classes and what is covered, signs of housing discrimination, and in-depth look at barriers impacting this population, throughout the home seeking experience and post-housing acquisition; it also includes information on referral and resolution of complaints.

Monday, April 17, 2023

1:00 pm – 2:30 pm; online

Hosted online by the Michigan Coalition Against Homelessness, register here.


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35th Annual Fair Housing Workshop Series

9:00 AM - 1:15 PM

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Our theme is Where We Live Matters: Housing, Health, and the Environment.

We look forward to celebrating the 55th Anniversary of the Fair Housing Act with you all! This year's theme will focus on fair housing and social determinants of health and will feature remarks from Andre M. Perry, Senior Fellow at Brookings Metro, and Debby Goldberg, Vice President of Housing Policy & Special Projects at National Fair Housing Alliance (NFHA).

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Register now!

Registration is now open for our 35th Annual Fair Housing event, which will be taking place online on April 27th.  Learn more and register!  We look forward to hearing from Dr. Andre Perry and Debby Goldberg among others. This year's theme is Where We Live Matters: Housing, Health, and the Environment.

Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act Expanded

March 16, 2023 - Governor Whitmer signed an expansion of the Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act into law Thursday.  Legislation passed to amend Michigan's Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act (ELCRA) to include sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression as being protected from discrimination under the law. The ELCRA amendment ensures LGBTQ+ people in Michigan are protected from discrimination in employment, housing, education, and public accommodations.

U.S. Attorney Announces Settlement In Sexual Harassment Lawsuit Against Muskegon Landlord

The Justice Department (DOJ) announced March 2nd that it has secured an agreement to resolve a lawsuit alleging that Muskegon, Michigan, landlord Darrell Jones violated the Fair Housing Act by sexually harassing female tenants. This case was referred to the Justice Department by the FHCWM.

“We admire the courageous women who spoke out to bring forth fair housing justice”, says Elizabeth Stoddard, Director of Advocacy of the Fair Housing Center of West Michigan. “In partnership with the Justice Department and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Michigan, we see you and we hear you. We believe you and we stand with you. A woman’s home should be her safe place.”

If you or someone you know has experienced sexual harassment in housing, please contact our office at 616-451-2980.

NEW Memo from HUD on Use of Criminal Records by Housing Providers

June 10, 2022 - HUD issued a Memorandum on Implementation of the Office of General Counsel’s Guidance on Application of Fair Housing Act Standards to the Use of Criminal Records by Providers of Housing and Real Estate-Related Transactions.  It includes best practices and reasonable accommodation information among other topics.  See the FHCWM's Fact Sheet.

FHCWM Part of Historic Settlement with Fannie Mae

February 7, 2022 - The Fair Housing Center of West Michigan (FHCWM), along with the National Fair Housing Alliance (NFHA) and 19 other fair housing organizations throughout the country, reached a landmark $53 million agreement with Fannie Mae (formally known as the Federal National Mortgage Association).  The settlement resolves the groups’ claims that Fannie Mae treated homes it owned in majority-Black and Latino communities unfavorably. The settlement will help rebuild and strengthen communities of color in 39 metropolitan areas. “Poorly maintained and marketed REO homes compounded the negative impact of the foreclosure crisis on property values, curb appeal, and tax revenue for schools in our hardest hit neighborhoods” said Nancy Haynes, Executive Director of the Fair Housing Center of West Michigan. “Now, in the face of the affordable housing crisis, we look forward to the opportunity this settlement gives for increased community investment and partnership to emerge from these crises with stronger, sustainable and thriving neighborhoods.”  To learn more, download the FHCWM's Press Release. See also: Complaint and Original National Press Release

HUD to Enforce Fair Housing Act to Prohibit Discrimination on the Basis of Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity

Feb. 11, 2021 - HUD announced that it will administer and enforce the Fair Housing Act to prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.  HUD’s Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity issued a memorandum stating that HUD interprets the Fair Housing Act to bar discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity and directing HUD offices and recipients of HUD funds (including the FHCWM) to enforce the Act accordingly. The memorandum begins implementation of the policy set forth in President Biden’s Executive Order 13988, which directed executive branch agencies to examine further steps that could be taken to combat such discrimination.

Executive Order on Discriminatory Housing Practices and Policies

Jan. 26, 2021 - President Biden signed four executive actions aimed at advancing racial equity for Americans the White House says have been underserved and left behind, including directing HUD  "to take steps necessary to redress racially discriminatory federal housing policies". Read the order.

Office Update

2021: Please note that our office remains closed to the public until further notice.  All FHCWM staff are working remotely and will be fully accessible via phone at 616-451-2980 and email. Tenga en cuenta que nuestra oficina permanece cerrada al público hasta nuevo aviso. Todo el personal de FHCWM está trabajando de forma remota y será completamente accesible por teléfono al 616-451-2980 y correo electrónico.

FHCWM Resources on Assistance Animals

The FHCWM is pleased to offer a Resource Guide on Assistance Animals in Housing (en Español), as well as, updated Guidebooks for Consumers (en Español) and Housing Providers and a Fact Sheet Supporting Requests for Assistance Animals (en Español). These resources have been updated in regards to the HUD Notice from January 2020.

FHCWM Book Club Resources

The FHCWM is pleased to offer tools to host your own (virtual) Book Club!  The newest selection is "Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City" by Matthew Desmond.  Visit our Book Club page to download a Facilitator's Guide and Discussion Questions.

Outreach & Resources for Sexual Harassment in Housing

The FHCWM is pleased to offer a fact sheet (en Español) on Sexual Harassment and Fair Housing, as well as tear off posters to raise awareness of this issue.  You can download these materials in English and Spanish on our publications page.  They are designed to be displayed in places where people can confidentially access our contact information.  Please contact us if you would like to recieve hard copies of any of these materials.

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20 Hall Street SE
Grand Rapids, MI 49507

Phone: 616-451-2980
Fax: 616-451-2657

Se habla español.