According to the City Fair Practices Provisions found in Article V, Chapters 651 through 659 of the Pittsburgh City code, the Commission on Human Relations has the power and duty to issue publications, reports of investigations, and research in the field of human relations.
In 2011, the Commission conducted a series of community meetings at various locations within the City of Pittsburgh as part of a continuing effort to educate the public with regard to their rights and responsibilities under the City's Fair Housing Law. During these meetings, a common concern repeatedly emerged regarding obstacles in finding housing faced by persons returning to the community following their release from incarceration.
In the later part of 2011, the Commission received notice from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) of the availability of funding for certain partnership activities. The Commission proposed a partnership with the Center for Metropolitan Studies at the University of Pittsburgh's Graduate School of Public and International Affairs to assess the barriers faced by previously incarcerated persons to obtaining housing within the City of Pittsburgh.
This report was released to the public in August 2013 after one year of hard work. We would like to thank HUD, the Center for Metropolitan Studies, and the Commissioners for supporting this research.
This research will further assist the Commission in meeting the challenges our residents face to enjoying equal access to housing in neighborhoods that are welcoming and equal in the provision of services.