© 2022 WFAE
90.7 Charlotte 93.7 Southern Pines 90.3 Hickory 106.1 Laurinburg
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Charlotte Talks: How Past Housing Policy Decisions Led To Segregation Today


Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Richard Rothstein’s "The Color of Law" illustrates how laws and housing policy at all levels promoted discriminatory patterns that continue to this day. Mike Collins talks with Rothstein and local organizers about how to use that knowledge to make better policy in the future.

This show is part of a special series examining America's history of racial injustice. It originally aired in 2019. 

We still live in a segregated society when it comes to housing.

Some of the fault lies with the organic nature of where people live, but much of the blame must fall on federal, state, and local laws --  and a housing policy that imposed racial segregation on areas nationwide for decades, with effects lingering into today.

This is detailed in Richard Rothstein’s book, "The Color of Law."

Last year, Charlotte was engaged in a community read of that book and held discussions on how an understanding of what came before might lead us to make better affordable housing decisions in the future.

We revisit our conversation with Richard Rothstein and some of the organizers of that community read as our series examining America’s history of racial injustice continues.


Richard Rothstein, author of "The Color of Law: A Forgotten History of How Our Government Segregated America."

Rev. Dr. Ricky Woods, senior minister of First Baptist Church-West, and a former member of the Opportunity Task Force.

Peter Kelly, former banking executive who is now an advocate for social justice. He co-chairs the Myers Park United Methodist Affordable Housing Group and is a member of several other similar groups.

More information about other community discussions here.

Charlotte Talks Executive Producer Wendy Herkey has been with WFAE since 1998, beginning in the membership department, and has been on the Charlotte Talks staff since 1999.