villa 041421SPRINGFIELD – On Tuesday, State Senator Karina Villa (D-West Chicago) joined a broad coalition of housing, civil justice and nonprofit organizations across the state to pledge her support of measures to increase access to housing by fighting income discrimination. 

“This legislation is critical now more than ever as we face a mounting housing affordability crisis and new destabilizing forces imposed by the pandemic,” Villa said. “Not only will this bill support those utilizing non-wage income and housing subsidies, but also workers like servers and bartenders who’ve experienced source of income discrimination because their profession may be viewed as unstable by housing providers. By ensuring landlords view all income with equal weight, we are creating important safeguards for family stability.”

Villa is the chief co-sponsor of Senate Bill 2492, which would help remove barriers to housing access by requiring the Department of Human Services to lift undue administrative burdens in the application process for tenants applying for housing assistance. This measure would also strengthen Illinois’ fair housing laws by creating new protections to ensure families are not refused housing solely because of the source of their income. 

“The COVID-19 pandemic has devastated our communities in more ways than we can count, and it also shined a bright light on the lack of fair and affordable housing in Illinois,” Villa said. “Everybody deserves equal access to housing opportunities, and it’s imperative that any action we take makes it easier for individuals to obtain much-needed assistance.”

The full press conference can be viewed here.