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NPR turns to Desmond Odugu for insight on racial covenants

Desmond Odugu portrait in front of bookshelves
November 17, 2021
Linda Blaser

Associate Professor of Education Desmond Odugu shared his insight on Chicago's historic racial covenants in an investigative report by National Public Radio.

Odugu is quoted in a digital written story,“Racial covenants, a relic of the past, are still on the books across the country,” on the NPR website.

Aired November 17 on Morning Edition, the story covered the existence of racially restrictive housing covenants in Chicago, Kansas City, St. Louis, San Diego, and elsewhere. The six-minute report was broadcast widely on NPR stations across the country. 

Although ruled unenforceable by the Supreme Court in 1948, the offensive covenant language still exists and remains “an ugly reminder of the country’s racist past,” according to the report.

Odugu, who has documented the history of racial residential segregation and where racial covenants exist in the Chicago area, has long involved students in his research as part of the College's signature Richter Scholar Summer Research Program.

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