February 2021

Columbus Urban League works to address local housing issues

Courtesy of ABC 6
Rodney Dunigan
February 24, 2021COLUMBUS, Ohio (WSYX) — It’s a troubling issue impacting thousands across central Ohio, families unable to attain adequate and affordable housing.

The Columbus Urban League indicates the African-American community is feeling the brunt of fair housing issues here in central Ohio. The group is developing a number of initiatives aimed at correcting the problem.

For some time the 6 On Your Side team has been the sounding board and last resort for families across central Ohio dealing with bad landlords or rough living situations. The stories are countless including those like past investigations on the Mayfair apartments in Columbus.

At the time we spoke with tenant Lanayah Dickerson who outlined a list of issues.

“Everybody at Mayfair has been having issues like this and nobody’s listening. I don’t think people should be treated like that because if we’re paying you our money every month, I feel like everything should be fixed. I guess they don’t feel the same,” Dickerson said at the time.

Over the years the apartment and management company has also gotten the attention of the Columbus City Attorney’s office.

The Columbus Urban League told ABC 6 that housing issues across the city are a growing problem. Urban League President Stephanie Hightower stresses that access to safe, secure, and affordable housing is key for all families.

“We also know there are still a lot of discriminatory practices going on as it relates to landlords and tenants. We have a lot of working poor, low wage earners who really cannot afford housing which is really unfortunate,” Hightower told ABC 6.

Hightower also told ABC 6 that the Urban League’s goal is to increase access to low-income families. Even providing emergency housing assistance to those who need it.

“We’re hoping to build a better relationship with the Columbus Realtors Association and Apartments Association so that we can begin to not only educate our individuals who are having issues but also to educate landlords, property owners so they really might understand what discrimination might look like,” Hightower said.

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