Trends in Subsidized Housing Segregation
In this chapter, we conduct a statistical test of the impact, if any, of the civil rights and fair housing legislation of the 1960s on racial segregation and income separation in federally subsidized low-income housing.
Data limitations are a serious hindrance when comparing historical trends, since we are far from the ideal situation of conceptually consistent data on racial occupancy and income dispersal of federally subsidized housing projects collected both before and after the legislation. Instead, as indicated in previous chapters, relevant data have been patchily collected (especially in the early period) and further distorted by changes in the definition and selection of variables. This situation limits our analysis of trends in segregation.
In analyzing changes in the degree of income separation of subsidized housing projects over time, it should be noted that the distribution of housing projects among income areas in a community can change simply as a result of economic changes in the community. Deterioration or revitalization of the surrounding community can move a housing project from a moderate-to-high- income area to a low-income area and vice versa. 1 Income areas can also change as a result of natural disasters (e.g., earthquake, flood, fire) or such