Fair Housing Accessibility FIRST
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Your FIRST Stop on the Learning Curve

U.S. Department of Housing and Urban DevelopmentEqual Housing Opportunity

Supported by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
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About Us

Fair Housing Accessibility FIRST is an initiative sponsored by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) designed to promote compliance with the Fair Housing Act design and construction requirements. The program consists of a comprehensive training curriculum, as well as a toll-free information line and website designed to provide technical guidance to the public.

Our program name, Fair Housing Accessibility FIRST, has dual significance. FIRST describes the services offered by the program: Fair Housing Information, Resources, Support, and Technical Guidance. It also conveys the importance of planning for compliance with the accessibility requirements first - before engineering, before design, before construction. Not only does federal law require compliance, it is easier and cheaper to plan and build in compliance with the law than it is to retrofit a structure after construction.

Fair Housing Accessibility FIRST Project History

With Fair Housing Accessibility FIRST, public and private owners, developers, architects, operators of housing, and others will learn how to engage in practices that do not discriminate against people with disabilities. In order to create this training and technical guidance program to meet the needs of the many diverse stakeholders, former program administrator BearingPoint conducted an extensive Needs Analysis designed to ascertain the information needed to effectively tailor the program and encourage participation.

The Needs Analysis consisted of a web survey, stakeholder interviews and extensive research; it included feedback from over 850 respondents throughout the country. As a result of the analysis, recommendations for the design and implementation of Fair Housing Accessibility FIRST were approved by HUD.

Support and Technical Guidance

LCM Architects was founded in 1996 to provide architecture and accessibility consulting services. The LCM team is comprised of architects, designers, problem solvers, as well as consultants in accessibility and universal design. The staff's personal and professional experiences drive LCM to look at each challenge from many perspectives. Always seeking the best solutions, LCM works side by side with clients to bring together function, common sense, and good design.

LCM is a Chicago based firm that works throughout the United States providing consulting services regarding the Americans with Disabilities Act Design Standards (ADA); the Fair Housing Act (FHA); the Rehabilitation Act (Section 504); and the Architectural Barriers Act (ABA). The firm provides consultation on accessibility provisions for the International Building Code (IBC), ANSI A117.1 and various state and local codes. We have a team of professionals comprised of architects and specialists dedicated to accessibility consulting.

LCM is proud to have had two partners chair the U.S. Access Board. As part of this federal initiative LCM's leadership has a strong sense for the criteria for accessible design.

Blending skill sets in architecture and accessibility, LCM has developed a strong knowledge of the principles of universal design. Building on the first project that incorporated these concepts, LCM has been awarded subsequent projects that follow these beliefs.

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HUD Launches Education and Outreach Program to Create More Barrier-Free Housing 
Program Educates Building and Design Industries about Accessibility Provisions of Fair Housing Act
February 21, 2003