April is Fair Housing Month in West Virginia, celebrating the laws established in the state to prevent discrimination in the selling and renting of houses. For example, someone cannot refuse to rent an apartment or sell a house to a person because they are of a different race or because they are blind and have a service dog.
Students were asked to design a poster that promoted fair and equal housing for people of all races, genders, religions, and disabilities. Debbie Sisson, art teacher at Ripley High, has given her students opportunities for multiple art contests this year, but the students still made the time to enter this one.
Sisson commented, “I am very proud of my students who participated and did so well.”
Posters were submitted from all over West Virginia, but the first three prizes were all presented to students in Ripley High School. First place went to senior Elizabeth Knox, 2nd place went to freshman Kiana Lanham, and 3rd place went to senior Katherine Simmons. The 1st place winner’s school also received $125 for art supplies.
“I drew an architectural structure with wooden panels,” Knox said about her poster. “Each panel was a different color, which represented different races, religions, genders, and other groups.”
Knox attended a luncheon at the Charleston Civic Center to receive her prize of $100. It was presented to her by representatives of the Human Rights Commission.
“I feel very honored to be able to represent the WV Fair Housing Association,” said Knox.