PHOTO COURTESY OF REALTOR.COM HOUSING SEGREGATION: A four-part series coordinated by South Florida People of Color will explore how the government facilitated and maintains segregated housing.

MIAMI SHORES, Fla. – Where we live affects our quality of life. Zip codes have a huge impact on education, employment, health and well-being, and financial security.

South Florida People of Color (SFPoC) is launching a four-part series that explores the roots of housing segregation in intentional government action under Jim Crow in South Florida that evolved into “race-neutral” regulations and decisions riddling banking, real estate,property taxes, and other areas that tend to reinforce segregation.

“So many of us have no idea that government and private industry planned and enforced segregation down to the last detail through, for example, home loans and redlining.

Further, many don’t understand the systemic racism keeping it alive today,” says Roni Bennett, the SFPoC Executive Director. “We can’t end it if we don’t really know where it came from and why it continues. We hope to uncover answers in this series.”

Frances Peake, Program Coordinator of SFPoC’s Unity360 Community Race Dialogues said, “What makes Unity360 special is the opportunity to get together with people who have different experiences and backgrounds. In a purposeful discussion of how race impacts our lives, we learn together and learn from each other.”

Session 2 of the series on Oct. 13 will have N.D.B Connolly discussing his book, “A World More Concrete: Real Estate and the Remaking of Jim Crow South Florida” and conducting a Q&A session.

Connolly is the Herbert Baxter Adams Associate Professor of History at the Krieger School of Arts & Sciences at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, MD. His book won the 2014 Kenneth T. Jackson Book Award from the Urban History Association, the 2015 Liberty Legacy Foundation Book Award from the Organization of American Historians, and the 2016 Bennett H. Wall Book Award from the Southern
Historical Association. Connolly is a contributor to WGBH Boston’s Here and Now (radio), provides commentary for The New York Times and is the co-host on the weekly podcast Backstory.

In June 2016, Connolly and Professor Keisha N. Blain organized the crowdsourced Trump Syllabus 2.0 ( )“I write about racism, capitalism, politics and the built environment. My work pays special attention to people’s overlapping understanding of property rights and civil rights in the United States and the wider Americas,” he explained.

Session 1 – Saturday, Sept. 29, 9:30am-12:30pm – This facilitated dialogue will use first-hand accounts of people who experience housing discrimination to interrogate the system that created and upholds segregation. We will begin to think about how our own lives are impacted by the “geography of opportunity”.

Session 2 – Saturday, Oct. 13, 9:30am-12:30pm – Book discussion with special guest appearance by Dr. N.D.B. Connolly, professor and award-winning author of “A World More Concrete: Real Estate and the Remaking of Jim Crow South Florida” (University of Chicago Press, 2014). This book discussion will walk us through seminal events that impacted generations of Miamians.

Session 3 – Saturday, Oct. 27, 9:30am-12:30pm – Bus Tour: Segregated Miami Past and Present. Join us as we explore the neighborhoods that have struggled under the weight of historically discriminatory practices and witness changes that are occurring today due to South Florida’s rapid growth and climate gentrification. The tour will be guided by Jacqui Colyer, a community consultant.

Session 4 – Saturday, Nov. 3, 9:30am-2:00pm – Community workshop and lunch. Our series will wrap up with an opportunity to reflect on what we have learned, seen and shared. Using a workshop format, we will dig deeper into our own experiences and our potential for creating meaningful change.

All sessions will be held at the Christian Fellowship Missionary Baptist Church, 8100 NW 17 Ave., Miami, FL 33147. The Bus tour will begin at the church.