Owning the Future: Land Policies in Low-Income Communities
Announcement & Call for Presentations
Land Policies in Low-Income Communities
January 9 - 11, 2003 2004
Why Land Is Important in Low-Income Communities
One of the best predictor's of a child's future is the amount of assets the parents have. And owning their land, including their house, is the greatest asset most families have. In low-income communities across the country, however, families face significant obstacles in obtaining and retaining clear land ownership.
Low-income families along the U.S.-Mexico border buy land through a "rent-to-own" contract for deed system, which often leaves them without clear title to their homes.
Inner-city neighborhoods are riddled with vacant lots that become havens for illegal activities. The lots cannot be developed due to "clouded" titles.
African-American farmers in the South face constant threats of losing their land, often because of "fractionated heirship," the partitioning of the land over generations of ownership.
Low-income Appalachian families are displaced from their homes because of underground mineral rights bought by mining companies that now mine the land.
Native Americans must "re-purchase" the land they once owned because of displacement.
The underlying issues of low-income communities often stem from land ownership obstacles. There is great commonality among the issues as well as the solutions, and between these low-income communities and low-income communities in other countries.
The conference will:
- Promote understanding of the critical importance of land tenure in building sustainable assets in low-income communities and explore the commonality of land tenure issues between urban and rural communities
- Examine challenges facing communities in obtaining and retaining land rights
- Highlight successful land regularization solutions that may be used as models in other communities
- Foster an interchange of information, experiences and research between the conference participants, including policy makers, practitioners and academics
- University of Texas-Pan American
- Land Tenure Center, University of Wisconsin-Madison
- Ford Foundation
- Community Resource Group, Austin, Texas
- Focus attention on the critical issues of land policy in urban and rural low-income communities in the United States
- Offer a specific and targeted learning opportunity for anyone interested in land policies in low-income communities
- Provide a forum for network development and coalition formation
Who should attend?
Practitioners, Policy Makers and Academics involved in land ownership and land regularization issues in the U.S. and around the world.
Benefits of attending
- Examine common obstacles facing low-income communities in securing and preserving land tenure
- Examine successful models of resolving land titling issues in the U.S., and consider solutions utilized in other countries, including land reforms in South Africa and Latin America
- Exchange ideas and explore solutions to attaining land tenure rights utilized in a variety of situations around the world
Deadline for Proposals
Send proposals (2-pages maximum) to present a paper or organize a session by September 15, 2002, to: