Governor Jack Markell and County Executive Thomas P. Gordon each issued Proclamations declaring April as Fair Housing Month on Monday. The proclamations were issued at Housing Opportunities of Northern Delaware, Inc.’s 32nd annual Fair Housing Observance & Awards Luncheon hosted by County Executive Gordon at the New Castle County Government Center.
During the ceremony, County Executive Gordon signed Proclamation No. 0092 to declare the month of April as Fair Housing Month throughout New Castle County and presented it to HOND Board of Directors President George Evans and HOND Executive Director Gladys Spikes.
During his remarks, County Executive Gordon noted that housing discrimination in New Castle County was the real cause of the school segregation that led to the forced busing order handed down in Evans v. Buchanan. He added that knowledge of the history of county neighborhoods being segregated was necessary to understanding the importance of fair housing.
“[T]he struggle continues for the equal right to live wherever one chooses and be treated with dignity,” the Executive’s Proclamation states in part. “… I encourage all New Castle County residents to join me in recognizing this important time and support fair housing activities such as those provided by HOND, Inc.”
Governor Markell, represented by Delaware State Housing Authority Director of Housing Finance Matthew Heckles, also presented a proclamation declaring April Fair Housing Month in Delaware. Director Heckles was followed by New Castle County Board of Realtors President Michael Dunning, who presented a proclamation from his organization to express its support for fair housing and “the American dream” for all. In addition, State Rep. Charles Potter, represented by his assistant, Rylene Harper, expressed his ongoing support for Fair Housing.
New Castle County Council President Pro Tempore Penrose Hollins, a longtime advocate of fair housing, said Monday’s ceremony was an important reminder on the ongoing quest for equality.
“Fair housing is a critical element of economic equality for New Castle County residents and a top priority of our government,” Councilman Hollins said.