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New York Fair Housing test gets boost in funding: What does it mean?

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The Fair Housing Testing Program in New York, which seeks to reduce housing discrimination in home rental and sale transactions, is receiving a $2.2 million expansion, Governor Kathy Hochul’s office announced on Friday.

The program uses undercover testers to pose as potential renters and homebuyers to identify suspected discrimination in the housing market. The newly announced funds will be used to expand investigations of discrimination in housing, as well as to improve education and outreach efforts on the rights of prospective renters and homebuyers.

“I am using all of the resources at my disposal to combat housing discrimination and ensure that all New Yorkers are treated with dignity, fairness, and respect when seeking the housing of their choice,” said Governor Hochul. “Our investment in this crucial program sends a clear message: housing discrimination will not be tolerated here in New York.”

The Fair Housing Testing Program was first established in 2021 and currently contracts with six non-profit organizations to test renting and homebuying in 48 counties in New York, including the five boroughs of New York City, Long Island, the Hudson Valley, and the Capital Region. The testers pose as potential tenants or purchasers to determine whether sellers, brokers, or landlords are engaging in discriminatory practices.

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