Discrimination complaint says Houston denied $4 million funding

November 06, 2008
Developers of a proposed complex that would provide housing for the homeless and mentally ill filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development alleging that the city is discriminating against the disabled and blacks by not funding the project.
     In the complaint filed last week, the Housing Corporation of Greater Houston alleges the city violated the federal Fair Housing Act by not providing $4 million for the corporation's Magnolia Glen project.
     The Housing Corporation, a nonprofit that primarily builds and operates housing for the homeless, does not accuse the city of intentional discrimination.
     Instead, it alleges that the City Council's failure to vote on the Housing Corporation's request for funding has had the effect of discriminating against blacks, who the complaint says comprise more than half of the city's homeless, and disabled homeless people who are mentally ill or have HIV.