Wow 2020! What have you done to us and what is left up your sleeve?
The Australian Wildfires, the impeachment of the President of the United States, a pandemic that continues to rage, double-digit unemployment numbers, and the brutal police killings of people of color, including Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and George Floyd.
2020 has been rough.
I applaud everyone who is diligently staying home when possible, wearing a mask without offense, and marching in the streets for social justice. 2020 has illuminated and amplified the cracks in our society. As we look forward, my hope is we can rebuild a society that cares about all people, creates equity, and removes inequity.
Presidential candidate, Joe Biden, said in a June 10th op-ed that,
“Today, the gap between African American and white homeownership is larger than it was in the late 1960s.
We have to give local officials the tools to combat gentrification, end discriminatory lending practices, and eliminate exclusionary zoning laws designed to keep low-income people and people of color out of certain communities.”
In a 2019 report from the Urban Institute, a 30% gap was found in homeownership between white and Black people. Homeownership is often thought to be the largest contributor to overall financial stability. This includes building generational wealth. The idea that your kids will financially start off better than you did. So, if we want to fight inequality, we must work towards higher homeownership rates for people of color, especially Black people.
The African American Alliance for Homeownership does exactly that. Their “mission is to increase homeownership and economic stability for African Americans and other underserved individuals.”
As an equal opportunity organization, they are open to people of all colors. Before the pandemic, they offered classes, bus tours, and an annual homeownership fair. Those will resume once it’s deemed safe. They also offer foreclosure counseling, a savings match program for first time home buyers, and legal estate planning.
For more information, or to donate, visit them at: https://www.aaah.org/
For other local organizations working towards equality, check out:
The Urban League of Portland
The Portland African American Leadership Forum