Integration in housing still a dream deferred

January 30, 2003
Public housing is supposed to be changing. Chicago's infamous projects, where many of the city's poor and black citizens have been warehoused since the 1960s, are being erased from both the skyline and memory. The new gospel in public housing is what used to be called Section 8 and now goes by the name Housing Choice Vouchers. Funded by the federal government but administered locally, these vouchers are meant to allow low-income residents to spread out into neighborhoods, integrated both racially and economically.
     But so far, in both Chicago and Evan-ston, this is just another dream deferred.
     That's why several public interest legal groups filed a class-action lawsuit against the Chicago Housing Authority last week, alleging the agency is perpetuating segregation by moving its tenants out of the Projects and into the old ghettos. The CHA evicted them, gave them vouchers and sent them off to the slums on the South and West sides.