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Meet the Gov Mascot: #1 – Franklin the Fair Housing Fox

Next week is Public Service Recognition Week (PSRW)!

GovLoop is teaming up with the Partnership for Public Service to promote PSRW by running a special series called “Meet the Government Mascot.” You’ve heard of Smoky Bear, McGruff and Woodsy owl, but have you met Lady Liberty, Thermy the Thermometer or Energy Ant? You will soon!

Each day for the next ten days, we will introduce a new mascot. Then on May 6-8, we will run a contest where you can vote for your favorite. More on that contest soon…
So let’s get started!

Franklin the Fair Housing Fox

In April 2007, the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity unveiled its first-ever fair housing mascot. Just as McGruff the Crime Dog represents the fight against crime, Franklin, the Fair Housing Fox, will symbolize the nation’s efforts to end housing discrimination.

Designed to appeal to children and their parents, Franklin, the Fair Housing Fox, encourages the public to “Dare to Be Fair” by promoting the message that “Fair Housing Is Not an Option; It’s the Law.” When children visit Franklin at www.hud.gov/kids, they can obtain easy-to-understand Franklin Facts about The Fair Housing Act and learn how fighting housing discrimination is everyone’s responsibility. Parents and kids can also email Franklin at [email protected]if they have questions.

“The idea is to create a symbol that will help educate the public, particularly our future renters and home buyers, about their Fair Housing Rights,” said Kim Kendrick, Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity. “Our hope is that this mascot will lead to greater housing opportunities for all who call America home, regardless of what they look like or where they were born.”

Parents are encouraged to use HUD’s kid’s Website to get tips on how to talk to their children about housing bias. Families with children can also “Follow the Fox” when they encounter discrimination by going to www.hud.gov/kids and clicking on the Fox.

The Fair Housing Act makes it illegal to deny housing based on familial status, race, color, national origin, religion, disability, or sex. Used to create awareness, Fair Housing Month is designed to educate people of all ages about the rights they have under the Fair Housing Act and to promote the principles of equal opportunity in housing.

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Amanda Blount

I am happy the military makes housing areas off limits to soldiers if the rental company, or person, has been found to deny housing for different reasons. Good Job Franklin Foxy!