The Oregonian’s Brad Schmidt recently published a four-article series called “Locked Out: The Failure of Portland-Area Fair Housing.” To get a taste of the article, read this quotable moment: “taxpayer money meant to help break down segregation and poverty is instead reinforcing it.”
On a personal level, I’m outraged because the money that I pay in taxes is actually undermining the work I do in the classroom and the community. On a community level, I’m outraged because systemic racism and classism continue to play pivotal roles in decisions made about neighborhoods, housing, quality of living, access to resources, and access to strong schools.
I often hear education advocates and activists say that the movement for equitable education is the civil rights movement of our time. Maybe the call for fair housing practices and equitable neighborhoods (and access to resources) will become the civil rights movement of our time instead?
As an individual citizen, I don’t know exactly how to respond in a way that is as powerful as my feelings on this series of articles and our local practices. I will be following up on this post with ideas about how to get involved…if you have ideas or know about organizations that will be acting on these findings, please post here!