San Diego Habitat for Humanity stands with the Black Community and Communities of Color and joins in a desperate cry for justice, not only for the recent tragic deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, and Breonna Taylor, but for our countless neighbors who have been victims of historic, systemic, and institutional racism and prejudice in America for decades. We share your sadness and outrage, and we commit to doing better.

Habitat for Humanity was founded more than 40 years ago on the conviction that EVERYONE deserves to have a decent life. This was in Georgia as communities were fighting against the racial division created by Jim Crow laws. The racial inclusivity Habitat practiced then remains a core tenet of our work to this day. And in our work, that means working to provide fair and equitable opportunity for safe, stable homeownership.

It’s no secret that racism has affected access to housing since the founding of our country. We ask that you learn about the history of prejudice in housing, and we offer the following resources to read: “The Case for Reparations”, by Ta-Nehisi Coates, “The Color of Law”, by Richard Rothstein, and articles on housing inequity at City Lab and Urban Institute. Or, you can follow Lisa Rice, President & CEO of the National Fair Housing Alliance, an insightful expert on the topic of the housing and financial industries’ prejudice against people who are already marginalized.

We at San Diego Habitat are committed to helping to create equity and eliminate injustice in the space that we know best — housing. This is what we will do:

  1. Strive to partner with people in our community in creating paths to homeownership, regardless of race, creed, color, sexual orientation, religion, age, differing ability, or gender.
  2. Challenge our housing and banking partners to identify and eliminate the systems currently in place that have proven to perpetuate discriminatory outcomes with regard to access to mortgages and credit, and that have unfairly imposed additional costs to people of color.
  3. Advocate, at all levels of government, for fair access to housing and credit for people in Black and Brown Communities.
  4. As an organization, we can contribute to changing the system of inequity by changing ourselves. Therefore, we commit to address the uncomfortable and challenging questions that are necessary to transform our organization to better represent the community we serve and demonstrate the values of inclusion.
  5. We will listen carefully to all of the voices in the communities we serve, especially of Black and Brown Communities and those marginalized, to uplift and amplify resident needs.

We will be an energetic partner in bringing change and in the fight for justice. We urge you to join us and support organizations that are actively fighting to end police brutality and racial discrimination, speak up in your communities, support Black-owned businesses and restaurants in San Diego, and show solidarity to our community members and People of Color who are affected by racial discrimination.