Interracial Housing

February 6, 1963

Report Outline
The Government and Residential Segregation
Factors Counseling Interracial Housing
Outlook for Desegregation of Housing

The Government and Residential Segregation

Effects of the President's Housing Order

First Effects of the executive order issued last November by President Kennedy to ban racial discrimination in federally aided housing are expected to become apparent when the 1963 construction season gets well under way in the spring. There has been speculation that the order will cause builders to cut back new housing starts. The volume of residential construction may depend to some extent on the strength of Negro demand for housing in suburban areas where some of the old barriers to sales and rentals to non-whites can presumably be surmounted as a result of the President's order.

A month after the order was issued, the Housing and Home Finance Agency reported that a new study showed a “spectacular rise” in the income of Negro urban families and hence of their ability to buy houses or rent apartments of good quality. Federal housing officials think that, in light of this largely untapped housing market, the White House move against discrimination will have the effect of stimulating rather than depressing construction.

Limits on the coverage of the executive order, however, may well stand in the way of a showdown on the controversial question of residential segregation as conclusive as that which followed the decision of the Supreme Court in 1954 outlawing racial segregation in public schools. It is widely believed that the chief effect of the housing order will be to encourage an existing if not yet extensive trend toward open occupancy in the sale and rental of urban housing. What remains to be seen is whether the order will help to scatter Negro occupancy over entire metropolitan areas or whether it will merely help to create new pockets of Negro residency in suburbs heretofore largely restricted to white residents.

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
Segregation and Desegregation
Apr. 23, 2004  School Desegregation
Oct. 18, 1996  Rethinking School Integration
Feb. 24, 1995  Housing Discrimination
Dec. 26, 1975  Busing Reappraisal
May 03, 1974  Desegregation After 20 Years
Aug. 24, 1973  Educational Equality
Sep. 06, 1972  Blacks on Campus
Mar. 01, 1972  School Busing and Politics
Aug. 16, 1967  Open Housing
Apr. 29, 1964  School Desegregation: 1954–1964
Feb. 06, 1963  Interracial Housing
Aug. 27, 1958  School Integration: Fifth Year
Jan. 15, 1958  Residential Desegregation
Oct. 16, 1957  Legal Processes in Race Relations
Oct. 17, 1956  Enforcement of School Integration
Jan. 12, 1955  School Desegregation
Sep. 03, 1954  Segregation in Churches
Oct. 08, 1952  Race Segregation
Nov. 07, 1947  Negro Segregation
Civil Rights: African Americans
Fair Housing and Housing for Special Groups
Segregation and Desegregation