U.S. Fair Housing Act Turns 50 Years Old in April 2018

U.S. Fair Housing Act 50th Anniversary

Tallahassee–As the nation celebrates National Fair Housing Month this April, the Florida Commission on Human Relations (FCHR) will be holding events across Florida commemorating the 50th anniversary of the passage of the U.S. Fair Housing Act. This year, the Fair Housing Month theme is “Fair Housing Equals Opportunity,” emphasizing the fact that equality in housing provides the foundation upon which aspirations can be achieved and productive lives can be built while reflecting on the continued relevance of the Fair Housing Act. 

The landmark legislation, which was signed into law on April 11, 1968, prohibits discrimination in the sale, rental and financing of housing based on race, color, national origin, sex, (and as amended) disability or family status. Every April, people across the country are encouraged to learn more about their rights and responsibilities under the Act as a part of the National Fair Housing Month.

More than 8,000 people filed housing discrimination complaints with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) last year, most from persons with disabilities, according to an annual report released this month by HUD.  Race-based housing discrimination was the second most frequent reason individuals filed complaints.

The FCHR Housing Unit has many activities planned to celebrate Fair Housing Month in April 2018. Here are a few of the events at which the FCHR will be participating:

  • April 9-11: 2018 Palm Beach County Fair Housing Summit (West Palm Beach)
  • April 12-13: 50th Anniversary Celebration of the Passage of the Fair Housing Act Fair Housing Workshops (Orlando)
  • April 13: 50th Anniversary Celebration of the Passage of the Fair Housing Act Fair (West Palm Beach)
  • April 14: 50th Anniversary Celebration of the Passage of the Fair Housing Act Fair (Jacksonville)
  • April 20: 50th Anniversary Celebration of the Passage of the Fair Housing Act Fair (Tampa)
  • April 27: 50th Anniversary Celebration of the Passage of the Fair Housing Act Fair (Miami)

The Florida Commission on Human Relations, established in 1969 by the Florida Legislature, is the state agency charged with administering the Florida Civil Rights Act and Fair Housing Act. Fair treatment, equal access and mutual respect are the benchmarks of the Commission’s commitment. Through education and partnerships, the Commission works to prevent discrimination and costly litigation through teaching best business practices and fostering understanding amongst Floridians.

For more information, visit http://fchr.myflorida.com, or on Facebook and Twitter.

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Jenkins and Peterson Selected to Chair and Vice Chair of Florida Commission on Human Relations


January 30, 2018



Frank Penela
(850) 907-6787

TALLAHASSEE – Recently, members of the Florida Commission on Human Relations (FCHR) unanimously selected Tony Jenkins of Lake Mary to serve as the Chair of the FCHR and Latanya Peterson of Fleming Island to serve as Vice Chair.

Chair Jenkins is Florida Blue Market President for the Central Florida region, developing business plans to increase and retain membership, enhance brand visibility and coordinate employee engagement. Prior to joining Florida Blue, Jenkins served as Director of Diversity for CSX Corporation and spent 20 years with the Walt Disney World Company in various management roles. 

He is the past Chair for both United Arts of Central Florida and Leadership Orlando Class 89.  He also serves on the Orlando Economic Partnership and the Central Florida Foundation, as well as a Board Trustee at Stetson University. Jenkins was appointed by Governor Rick Scott to serve on the FCHR in 2014.  He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Hospitality Management from Morris Brown College in Atlanta, GA.

Vice Chair Peterson is an education professional and community advocate living in Fleming Island, Florida. An educator for more than 12 years, Peterson recently joined the Clay County Sheriff’s Office, where she assists Sheriff Darryl Daniels as the “Planning and Research Specialist.” Previously she served as Florida’s State Director for Engagement with the Republican National Committee, a high school English teacher and an education consultant for Steele Communications.

In addition to her professional work, Peterson is a passionate advocate for Clay County and Northeast Florida. She is a member of the Rotarian E-Club District 6970, on the Board for AMIKids Clay County and a Precinct Committeewoman for the Clay County Republican Party.

Peterson was appointed by Governor Rick Scott to serve on the FCHR in 2017.
FCHR works to prevent unlawful discrimination by investigating and resolving complaints of discrimination in the areas of housing, employment and public accommodations, as well as state employee whistle-blower retaliation against state agencies and state contractors. Since its creation in 1969, the Commission has investigated and closed more than 74,000 cases while enforcing the Florida Civil Rights Act, the Florida Fair Housing Act and the Florida Whistle-blower’s Act. Since 2006, Florida stakeholders have avoided at least $12 million per year by successfully participating in FCHR’s mediation services, thus preventing potentially costly lawsuits.

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