Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
We are committed to racial diversity, equity and inclusion in all of our work, from our hiring practices to our investments in new homes.
Minnesota Housing acknowledges that its offices are located on Dakota land. We recognize that local, state and federal housing policies have disadvantaged Indigenous people, Black Minnesotans and households of color for decades.
We listen to and incorporate the words of those who have faced housing instability and homelessness. We are expanding our work with developers of color and we strive to close the homeownership gap between white households and households of color. Minnesota Housing supports staff members with continuing education to better serve Minnesota as antiracist public servants.
Leadership Role Created to Lead Equity Initiatives
In 2021 the Agency created a new executive role, the Director of Equity and Inclusion. The director serves on the Servant Leadership Team to develop Agency staff and leaders' ability to embed an equity lens at the foundation of our work. Minnesota Housing is one of only a handful of housing finance agencies across the nation to have an executive-level equity and inclusion role.
Creating an Inclusive and Equitable Housing System
From our 2020-2023 Strategic Plan, a key objective of Minnesota Housing is to create an inclusive and equitable housing system. To do so, we:
- Empower communities to co-develop solutions.
- Address systemic barriers.
- Make our programs more inclusive and equitable.
- Diversify the partners with which we work.
ACTION: Help more households of color achieve homeownership
While Minnesota has one of the highest rates of homeownership across the nation, a closer look at the racial demographics of homeowners tells a different story. While 78% of white/non-Latinx households own their homes, only 51% of all households of color own their homes. For Black households, the rate is 13%.
To combat the racial disparities in homeownership, we challenged ourselves to make 40% of our first-time homebuyer loan programs to Black households, Indigenous households and households of color by 2023. We have achieved this goal and even met it a year early. The housing industry only achieves about half that rate.
ACTION: Engaging more developers of color
We seek to engage more developers of color through our Requests for Proposals, particularly in our annual Consolidated RFP to create and preserve rental housing. One way we do this is by awarding extra points to developers of color during the scoring process as we select projects for financing.
ACTION: Incorporate community voices in our work
We are working with consultants with lived experience for our 2024-2027 strategic plan. In 2022 we contracted with community reviewers to assist in selecting Capacity Building Grant recipients.
At Minnesota Housing, we believe that our workforce should reflect the communities most impacted by housing disparities. We actively work to ensure our human resource practices support the hiring and retention of candidates who support our commitment to racial diversity, equity and inclusion.
Feature: "Righting the Wrongs"
“Righting the Wrongs,” a chapter of “Where We Live: Minnesota Housing Celebrates 50 Years,” addresses racist policy decisions that continue to disadvantage Minnesota households of color today.
The story features a new affordable senior housing development in Minneapolis and innovative Tribal developments in Greater Minnesota. It also addresses the Agency’s role in righting historic wrongs.