Boston Scraps Housing Desegregation Program

The recent decision to allow Boston public housing residents to choose the developments where they live evokes memories of Boston's rocky past with desegregation programs.
September 22, 2003, 6am PDT | Connie Chung
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"Federal officials have cleared the way for Boston's public housing applicants to choose the developments where they live, scrapping a citywide waiting list the courts forced on housing officials 15 years ago to stamp out racial segregation. The Boston Housing Authority...had adopted the citywide list in response to a 1988 lawsuit alleging that minorities were steered away from mostly white developments....But for nearly a decade, BHA officials and Mayor Thomas M. Menino have pushed for a return to site-based lists, arguing that the BHA has revamped its policies and staff and that people in dire financial straits should be able to live in the neighborhood of their choosing....The desegregation of the housing developments in the late 1980s sparked outrage in several city neighborhoods, echoing the school desegregation battles of the decade before."

Thanks to Connie Chung

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Published on Friday, September 19, 2003 in The Boston Globe
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