Statement from Habitat for Humanity International CEO Jonathan Reckford on the June 29 Supreme Court ruling on affirmative action

ATLANTA (June 29, 2023) – Habitat for Humanity International CEO Jonathan Reckford issued the following statement regarding the June 29 Supreme Court ruling on affirmative action:  

We see every day the crucial role both stable housing and education play in developing a solid foundation for families and communities to thrive. I testified on the University of North Carolina’s behalf early on, as both UNC and Harvard argued to protect their affirmative action practices in this case.   

While there are arguments that reversing affirmative action to enact a race-blind process is more grounded in equity, we know from our work in advocating for decent, affordable housing that it is crucial to acknowledge systemic barriers and biases. Creating race-neutral policies without addressing underlying inequities and racially exclusive practices only perpetuates inequity.   

Habitat for Humanity sees this in our community work addressing the racial wealth and homeownership gap, including through our Advancing Black Homeownership initiative and Cost of Home campaign. We recognize the unique challenges that under-resourced communities face because of these disparities and will continue to advance fair opportunities for all communities through our housing, advocacy, market development and other programs. Our ministry also remains committed to diversity, equity and inclusion across our global employee population and within the communities where we work.  

About Habitat for Humanity

Driven by the vision that everyone needs a decent place to live, Habitat for Humanity found its earliest inspirations as a grassroots movement on an interracial community farm in south Georgia. Since its founding in 1976, the Christian housing organization has since grown to become a leading global nonprofit working in local communities across all 50 states in the U.S. and in more than 70 countries. Families and individuals in need of a hand up partner with Habitat for Humanity to build or improve a place they can call home. Habitat homeowners help build their own homes alongside volunteers and pay an affordable mortgage. Through financial support, volunteering or adding a voice to support affordable housing, everyone can help families achieve the strength, stability and self-reliance they need to build better lives for themselves. Through shelter, we empower. To learn more, visit