News

12/8/22 HUD Charges Colorado Landlord with Harassment and Retaliation

12/15/2022

HUD No. 22-248
HUD Public Affairs
(202) 708-0685
WASHINGTON - The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced today that it has charged Vernon Morgan, the owner of a house in Greeley, Colorado, with discrimination for subjecting a female tenant to harassment and retaliation because of sex. Read HUD’s Charge.

To read the HUD press release, please click here

HUD Announces Settlement Agreement with California Housing Providers Resolving Sexual Harassment Claims

10/07/2022

HUD No. 22-183, HUD Public Affairs, (202) 708-0685
FOR Release Friday, September 23, 2022

WASHINGTON - The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced today that it has approved a Conciliation Agreement with Indio, California, property owners Perris Family Apartments, LLC., Perris Family Apartments L.P., and The Coachella Valley Housing Coalition, as well as their property manager, Hyder & Company dba Hyder Property Management Professionals, and maintenance person Kenneth Parker, resolving allegations of housing discrimination because of sex. The Agreement resolves allegations that a female tenant was subjected to sexual harassment by Parker and that the owners and manager failed to prevent further incidents of sexual harassment. This Conciliation Agreement does not constitute an admission by Respondents or evidence of a determination by HUD of any violation of the Fair Housing Act or any other law. Read the Conciliation Agreement here.

To read the full HUD Press release, click here

Single mother wins against landlord for sexual harassment in federal court

8/03/2022

by Skyler Shepard Monday, August 1st 2022

JUPITER, Fla. (CBS12) — A single mother from Jupiter secured her win in federal court after she was sexually harassed by her landlord.

The case of Rita Fox v. Dana Gaines and Lucille Gaines used the grounds of the Fair Housing Act, which prohibits discrimination based on a person's sex. The Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeal has confirmed for the first time, due to this case, that sexual harassment is a form of gender discrimination.

To read the article in full, click here

HUD Charges Owner & Property Manager of a Florida RV Park with Discrimination Against Transgender Woman

7/05/2022

July 5, 2022

WASHINGTON - The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced today that it is charging 21 Palms RV Resort, Inc. and Nathan Dykgraaf, owner and manager of 21 Palms RV Resort Park in Davenport, Florida, with discriminating against a former tenant because of her gender identity. Read the Charge here.

The Fair Housing Act prohibits housing providers from discriminating because of a tenant’s gender identity. This includes prohibiting tenants from expressing their gender. HUD’s Charge of Discrimination resulted from a complaint that the tenant filed with HUD. The Charge alleges that Mr. Dykgraaf violated the Act when he gave the tenant a letter stating that he was aware she was transitioning and telling her to act as a man, talk as a man, and dress as a man to avoid trouble.

To read HUD's Press Release, click here

Justice Department Files Sexual Harassment Lawsuit Against Wisconsin Rental Property Owners

5/16/2022

Friday, May 13, 2022

The Department of Justice announced today that it has filed a lawsuit against Richard and Mary Donahue, owners of rental properties in the Janesville, Wisconsin area, alleging sexual harassment and retaliation in violation of the Fair Housing Act.

The lawsuit, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin, alleges that Richard Donahue, who manages the properties, sexually harassed numerous female tenants since at least 2000. According to the complaint, Donahue made repeated and unwelcome sexual comments to female tenants, entered the homes of female tenants without their consent, touched female tenants’ bodies without their consent, requested sexual contact, offered reduced or free rent in exchange for sexual contact and took adverse housing-related actions against female tenants who refused his sexual advances. The lawsuit also names as a defendant Mary Donahue, Richard Donahue’s wife, who co-owns some of the properties.

To read the full DOJ press release, click here

Tenants to share in $750K settlement with landlord over harassment claims

5/16/2022

Matt Sepic October 25, 2021

A federal judge on Monday ordered a Minneapolis landlord to pay $750,000 to settle allegations of sexual harassment against his tenants.

Plaintiff's attorneys say property owner Reese Pfeiffer repeatedly made unwanted sexual advances toward his tenants, who are mostly single Black mothers.

In a Fair Housing Act lawsuit, Mid-Minnesota Legal Aid alleged that Pfeiffer filed eviction notices against tenants over phony charges, then told them that they could "work it out" by having sex with him.

According to the civil complaint, Pfeiffer suddenly told Shatara Brown in June 2019 that she owed him $4,000, then tried to evict her after she refused his sexual advances. Brown, who’d been homeless for a time, rented a home from Pfeiffer in Crystal, Minn., even though she had heard about his alleged harassment of female tenants.

Pfeiffer allegedly told Brown, “I know a way you can catch up on your rent, but you just won’t give in.”

To read the full MPR News article, click here

The good and bad news about housing for LGBTQ Americans

5/16/2022

LGBTQ Americans finally won Fair Housing Act protections. Here’s how they’re working.

By Rachel M. Cohenrachel.cohen@voxmedia.com May 11, 2022

It’s been a particularly difficult time for Dianne Karon, a 65-year-old transgender woman, as the political vitriol aimed at queer and trans people has escalated.

Despite this, Karon says she still feels lucky because she has safe and secure housing after landing a spot in Stonewall House, a Brooklyn LGBTQ-friendly senior housing development that opened in 2019. Like many queer and trans people, she has struggled to find permanent housing, and having served time in prison certainly didn’t make things easier.

to read the full VOX article, click here

Fair Housing Advocates of Northern California Negotiates Settlement of Disability Discrimination Complaint on Behalf of Client

5/16/2022

Fair Housing Advocates of Northern California Negotiates Settlement of Disability Discrimination Complaint on Behalf of Client

May 5, 2022 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Caroline Peattie, Fair Housing Advocates of Northern California (415) 483-7552, peattie@fairhousingnorcal.org

San Rafael, CA – Just before Fair Housing Month was celebrated in April, a settlement agreement was executed in a gender and disability discrimination complaint brought by Fair Housing Advocates of Northern California (FHANC) and one of its clients against Bret Andrews. The complaint, filed in February 2021 with the Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH), alleged that Mr. Andrews discriminated against her in violation of federal, state, and local fair housing laws.


The client, a Mill Valley tenant of approximately ten years, alleged that Bret Andrews sexually harassed her, retaliated against her for refusing his sexual advances, and failed to accommodate her disability on multiple occasions.

To read the full FHAofNC press release, please click here

Examining Housing Experiences by Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity

5/05/2022

Veronica Helms, Emily Molfino, and Ben Winter from HUD’s Office of Policy Development and Research discuss insights from the U.S. Census Household Pulse Survey

To read HUD's Policy Development and Research survey results, click here

Fact Sheet: Reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA)

4/07/2022

To read the White House Fact sheet on the Reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) click here.

President Biden Signs Violence Against Women Act Reauthorization

4/07/2022

To read the National LGBTQ Task Force news announcement, click here

Landlord Accused of Demanding Sex to Stop Evictions to Pay $4M, Cannot Own, Manage Rentals

2/03/2022

BY AYUMI DAVIS ON 12/14/21 AT 4:44 PM EST
Joseph Centanni, a landlord in New Jersey, will pay an approximate $4.4 million settlement and is banned from owning or managing rental properties after being accused of demanding sex from his low-income tenants to stop evictions, the Department of Justice said Tuesday.

To read the full Newsweek story, click here

DOJ reaches 'historic' settlement against a landlord accused of sexually harassing tenants

12/15/2021

"New Jersey landlord has agreed to pay $4.5 million in damages to resolve a lawsuit alleging he demanded sexual favors from tenants and applicants so they could keep or receive housing, the Justice Department announced in a news release Tuesday."

To read the CNN article, click here

HUD Approves Agreement Between Owners of Tucson Apt. Complex & Same-Sex Couple Resolving Claims of Housing Discrimination

10/11/2021

October 7, 2021
WASHINGTON - The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced today that it has approved a Conciliation Agreement between the owners of an apartment complex in Tucson, AZ, the city of Tucson, and a same-sex African-American couple residing at the complex, resolving allegations that the owners and manager of the complex discriminated on the basis of sex and race when they failed to address the couple’s complaints of neighbor harassment, which included physical intimidation and disparaging statements being made about the couple’s race and sexual orientation. The owners also retaliated against the couple for complaining about the harassment. Read the Agreement. Or click, here.

Landlords Are Allegedly Asking For Sex From Tenants Who Can't Afford To Pay Rent Right Now

8/31/2021

“We’ve received more cases at our office in the last two days than we have in the last two years,” one women's advocate told BuzzFeed News.

Posted on April 15, 2020, at 6:01 p.m. ET

To read the BuzzFeed article, click here

DOJ's Sexual Harassment in Housing Initiative-Recent Cases

8/31/2021

To read about recent DOJ sexual harassment in housing cases, click here

Justice Department Obtains Settlement from San Diego Landlord to Resolve Claims Of Sexual Harassment Against Female Tenants

8/31/2021

The Justice Department today announced it has reached an agreement with defendant Larry Nelson to resolve a Fair Housing Act lawsuit alleging that he sexually harassed female tenants while owning and managing San Diego area rental properties.

To read the full DOJ Press release, click here

Justice Department Obtains $1.25 Million Settlement from Oklahoma City Landlords to Resolve Claims of Sexual Harassment Against Female Tenants

8/31/2021

Wednesday, August 4, 2021
The Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Oklahoma have reached a $1.25 million agreement with defendants Rosemarie Pelfrey, Omega Enterprises LLC and Pelfrey Investment Company Inc. to resolve a Fair Housing Act lawsuit alleging that their agent, Walter Ray Pelfrey (Pelfrey), sexually harassed female tenants and prospective tenants while owning or managing dozens of Oklahoma City – area rental properties. Pelfrey died in 2018.

To Read the full DOJ press release, click here

HUD To Probe Housing Bias Cases Involving Sexual Orientation Or Gender Identity

6/29/2021

The Department of Housing and Urban Development announced Thursday it will begin enforcing the Fair Housing Act to prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.

The move follows an executive order signed by President Biden on his first day in office instructing agencies to enforce prohibitions on such discrimination.

To continue to full NPR article, click here

A New Era for Housing Protections

6/29/2021

After being rejected numerous times by potential landlords when her identity documents did not match her gender, Angelica Butler, a transgender woman, reportedly spent years in and out of homelessness.

Stories like Angelica’s are not uncommon in the LGBTQ community. Under a new executive order, however, the Biden Administration is expanding protections for LGBTQ individuals by requiring federal agencies to prohibit discrimination on the basis of gender identity or sexual orientation. In a memorandum issued last month, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced that it would be the first agency to implement the executive order by enforcing the Fair Housing Act (FHA) to include LGBTQ protections.

To read the full The Regulatory Review article, click here

Housing Discrimination Remains a Big Barrier For the LGBTQ+ Community

6/29/2021

Pride month is a time to step back and appreciate the progress we have seen for LGBTQ+ people in Illinois—and to identity the urgent issues and harms still facing these communities. Lack of access to stable housing affects so many people, and anti-LGBTQ+ housing discrimination has long been a barrier to the safety and welfare of queer and transgender people. And in the midst of an ongoing pandemic, stable housing is more important than ever.

LGBTQ+ people continue to face significant bias based on sexual orientation and gender identity in housing.

To read the full ACLU article, click here

HUD Charge for Sexual Harassment

6/10/2021

WASHINGTON - The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced today that it is charging the husband-and-wife owners of apartments in Oil City, Pennsylvania, with sexual harassment and retaliation against a female resident. HUD’s charge alleges that the husband groped and tried to forcibly kiss the woman when he was in her unit to perform electrical repairs. HUD’s charge further alleges that the owners retaliated against the woman and her infant child after she told the wife about the husband’s harassment.

To Read HUD"s charge, click here

N.J. landlord charged with ‘coercing’ more than a dozen tenants into sex acts in exchange for housing

6/10/2021

By

An Elizabeth landlord, who federal authorities sued last year alleging the landlord demanded sexual favors from tenants, was arrested Friday morning on several criminal charges “for allegedly coercing more than a dozen of his tenants into sexual acts in exchange for financial relief,” NJ Advance Media has learned.
To con't reading this article, click here

Sexual Harassment And Domestic Violence Threaten Fair Access To Housing

6/10/2021

By Sara Oros / June 10, 2021

Housing discrimination and sexual harassment often overlap and create additional barriers for women in accessing and maintaining safe and affordable housing.

Of the federal protected classes, sexual harassment is included under the criteria for protections against sex discrimination. Sexual harassment is covered under Title VII, but also has specific protections in the Fair Housing Act (FHA) as well, because individual poor behaviors should never threaten access to safe housing.

To continue reading this NCRC article, please click here

HUD To Probe Housing Bias Cases Involving Sexual Orientation Or Gender Identity

3/02/2021

"The Department of Housing and Urban Development announced Thursday it will begin enforcing the Fair Housing Act to prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.

The move follows an executive order signed by President Biden on his first day in office instructing agencies to enforce prohibitions on such discrimination.

"People should be able to access healthcare and secure a roof over their heads without being subjected to sex discrimination," the order says in part. "All persons should receive equal treatment under the law, no matter their gender identity or sexual orientation."

To read the full NPR article, click here

Missouri Lesbian Couple Settles Discrimination Suit Against Senior Housing Community

2/16/2021

12.09.2020

Relman Colfax is pleased to announce the settlement of Walsh v. Friendship Village of South County, a lawsuit alleging that a St. Louis-area retirement community violated the sex discrimination provisions of the Fair Housing Act when it denied admission to Mary Walsh and Bev Nance because they are a lesbian couple. Our co-counsel were the National Center for Lesbian Rights, St. Louis LGBTQ civil rights attorney Arlene Zarembka, and the ACLU of Missouri.

To read the Relman Colfax press release, click here

HUD expands fair housing protections for transgender people

2/11/2021

By Tracy Jan

Feb. 11, 2021 at 10:32 a.m. PST

The Department of Housing and Urban Development said Thursday it will investigate complaints of discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity, expanding civil rights protections for LGBTQ people seeking housing or temporary shelter across the country.

To read the full Washington Post article, click here

Fair Housing Advocates of Northern California and Client Settle Sexual Harassment Complaint Against Landlord

12/22/2020

12/21/2020
San Rafael, CA – Fair Housing Advocates of Northern California (FHANC) and one of its clients settled a sexual harassment and disability discrimination complaint that had been filed with the Housing and Urban Development’s Department of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity against Turina Associates, LP et al.

To read the full press release from FHA of N. California, click here

Discrimination lawsuit sparks awareness campaign around senior living LGBT issues

12/10/2020

PHOTO:

Mary Walsh and Bev Nance pose at their 2009 wedding in Provincetown, MA. (Photo: Mary Walsh)

A new federal lawsuit alleging discrimination by a Missouri senior living community has sparked a public awareness and education campaign by a national advocacy group for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender older adults.

Wednesday, the National Center for Lesbian Rights; law firm Relman, Dane & Colfax; ACLU of Missouri and attorney Arlene Zarembka took legal action against Friendship Village Sunset Hills in St. Louis on behalf of a married lesbian couple who say they were denied a unit at the faith-based, not-for-profit continuing care retirement community in July 2016 because they are a same-sex married couple.

To read the full McKnight's Senior Living article, here

A Retirement Community Turned Away These Married Women

12/10/2020

PHOTO credit: Mary Walsh, left, and her wife, Beverly Nance, were denied admission to Friendship Village outside St. Louis. “This is not right," Ms. Walsh said. "They shouldn’t be able to do this.”Credit...Nick Schnelle for The New York Times

According to the facility’s “cohabitation policy,” marriage is between one man and one woman, “as it is understood in the Bible.”

Mary Walsh and Beverly Nance did considerable research in 2016 before deciding to move into a continuing care retirement community outside St. Louis.

They took a tour of Friendship Village Sunset Hills and were impressed by its pool and fitness center, a calendar crammed with activities, the newly built apartments for independent living. They had meals with a friend and with a former co-worker, and their spouses, all of them enthusiastic residents.

To continue reading the full NY Times article, click here

Walsh v. Friendship Village of South County

12/10/2020

On July 25, 2018, Relman Colfax filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri against Friendship Village Sunset Hills, a senior living community in St. Louis County, and its parent company, FV Services, Inc. The lawsuit was filed on behalf of Mary Walsh and Bev Nance, a married lesbian couple, who were denied housing at Friendship Village because they are a same-sex couple.

To read the case filing, click here

Missouri Lesbian Couple Settles Discrimination Suit Against Senior Housing Community

12/10/2020

12.09.2020

Relman Colfax is pleased to announce the settlement of Walsh v. Friendship Village of South County, a lawsuit alleging that a St. Louis-area retirement community violated the sex discrimination provisions of the Fair Housing Act when it denied admission to Mary Walsh and Bev Nance because they are a lesbian couple. Our co-counsel were the National Center for Lesbian Rights, St. Louis LGBTQ civil rights attorney Arlene Zarembka, and the ACLU of Missouri.

To read the full Relman Colfax press release, click here

N.J. landlord accused of ‘demanding’ sexual favors from tenants has discussed settling case with feds, records show

11/27/2020

The Elizabeth landlord who has been sued by the Department of Justice for allegedly “demanding” sexual favors from tenants in exchange to assist them with obtaining housing has discussed settling the case, according to court documents.

Joseph Centanni, 73, of Mountainside, has had settlement discussions with federal authorities after they sued him for violating the Fair Housing Act in August for allegedly sexually harassing tenants from at least 2005 to 2019, according to documents filed in federal court Monday.

To read the full article, click here

Landlord accused of trying to trade sex for rent faces stalking charges with tenant

11/27/2020

A Cincinnati landlord was indicted federally in 2018 on accusations of offering tenants free rent for sex and subjecting them to "severe, pervasive and unwelcome sexual harassment." That case was nearing an end in U.S. District Court this month, but the defendant, John Klosterman, 70, was arrested Tuesday and charged with menacing by stalking in a new case involving a tenant.

To read full article in the Cincinnati Enquirer, click here

N.J. landlord demanded sexual favors from low-income tenants for housing aid, feds say

8/25/2020

"Landlord Joseph Centanni, who received $100,000 in federal payments each month, threatened to evict tenants who didn't submit to his sexual demands, the Justice Department alleges."

To read the full NBC News Article, click here

N.J. Landlord Allegedly ‘Demanded’ Sexual Favors in Exchange for Housing, Feds Say

8/25/2020

"The U.S. Justice Department filed a lawsuit against a New Jersey landlord Wednesday alleging the man, who owns hundreds of rental units in and around Elizabeth, sexually harassed tenants and applicants, including demanding sexual favors in exchange for housing, for more than a decade."

To read the full article, click here

HUD Updates Equal Access Rule, Returns Decision Making to Local Shelter Providers

7/28/2020

"Rule upholds Department’s commitment to fair treatment of all individuals while allowing shelter providers to establish an admissions policy that best serves their unique communities"

WASHINGTON - U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Ben Carson today announced a proposed modification to the 2016 portion of the Equal Access rule. The Equal Access rule requires all HUD funded housing services to be provided without discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity.

To read HUD announcement in full, click here

New HUD rule would let shelters turn away transgender people

7/28/2020

"The proposed modification would turn away people whose gender identity does not match their biological sex"

"On Wednesday, [July 1, 2020] the Department of Urban Housing and Development proposed a modification that would allow homeless shelters to deny transgender people access to single-sex shelters of their gender identity.

This modification to the 2016 portion of the Equal Access rule “requires all HUD-funded housing services to be provided without discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity,” a statement from HUD said."

To read the full HousingWire article, click here

HUD’s New Shelter Rule Invites Further Discrimination against Transgender People

7/28/2020

“The rank cruelty of this proposed rule is a new low for this administration which continues its relentless attack on … transgender people.”

"July 24, 2020

(Washington, DC, July 24, 2020) – The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) today unveiled a proposed new rule that would empower federally funded emergency single-sex homeless shelters to turn away people seeking emergency housing based on the subjective determination of shelter staff about whether the person before them appears sufficiently masculine or feminine to be housed in that facility. The rule was published in the Federal Register today."

To read the full Lambda Legal article, click here

Proposed HUD rule rolls back Obama-era protections for homeless transgender individuals

7/28/2020

'The Trump administration announced a proposal on Wednesday to allow federally-funded housing services to turn away individuals whose gender identity does not match the sex they were assigned at birth. The proposed rule, according to Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson, would "better accommodate religious beliefs of shelter providers."

To read the full CBS News article, click here

HUD podcasts: Safe at Home

6/23/2020

Actress and activist Suzzanne Douglas interviews three courageous women who share their moving stories about sexual harassment in housing situations---and how they fought back. The stories range from a landlord groping a prospective tenant to a tenant being threatened with eviction if she didn’t have sex with the property manager. Learn how the Fair Housing Act protects you from sexual harassment in housing situations.

To Listen to the HUD podcasts, click here: Safe at Home Podcasts

NBC News: Landlords are targeting vulnerable tenants to solicit sex in exchange for rent, advocates say.

4/22/2020

"Some landlords are taking advantage of the coronavirus outbreak, soliciting sexual favors in lieu of rent payments from economically vulnerable tenants, according to advocates.

Khara Jabola-Carolus, executive director of the Hawaii State Commission on the Status of Women, said her office has received more reports of landlords sexually harassing their tenants in the last two weeks than it had in the two years since she started working there, including cases of landlords offering to move in with tenants and sending sexually explicit photos to them after they communicated concerns about paying April rent.

While the number of cases wasn't necessarily astronomical — the commission received 10 reports about nine landlords — Jabola-Carolus said they were especially notable given such cases go "vastly underreported."

to read full article, click here

US landlords trying to coerce cash-strapped tenants into ‘sex-for-rent’ agreements

4/22/2020

"Some disgusting US landlords are taking advantage of the coronavirus crisis by trying to coerce their cash-strapped tenants into “sex-for-rent” agreements, according to a disturbing new report.

In Hawaii, the state’s Commission on the Status of Women has seen 10 complaints of sexual harassment by landlords since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, BuzzFeed News reported.

“We’ve received more cases at our office in the last two days than we have in the last two years,” Khara Jabola-Carolus, the executive director of the commission, told the outlet last week.

In the Chicago area, Sheryl Ring, the legal director at Open Communities, a legal aid and fair housing agency, said that her organization has seen a threefold increase in housing-related sexual harassment complaints over the past month."

to read full article, click here

Some landlords soliciting sex in exchange for rent during pandemic: report

4/22/2020

Advocates say they have seen a spike in reports of landlords soliciting sex in exchange for rent from vulnerable tenants, NBC News reports.

The spike in solicitation comes as unemployment has climbed to more than 22 million in the span of just four weeks since businesses began shutting their doors during the coronavirus pandemic. The massive unemployment spike has nearly wiped out the 22.4 million jobs created in the 11-year recovery that followed the last recession in 2009.

to read the full article, click here

Landlords Are Allegedly Asking For Sex From Tenants Who Can't Afford To Pay Rent Right Now

4/17/2020

Posted on April 15, 2020, at 6:01 p.m. ET

“We’ve received more cases at our office in the last two days than we have in the last two years,” one women's advocate told BuzzFeed News

To read the full article, click here

Property Pimps: What to Do If Your Landlord Pressures Sex for Rent During COVID-19

4/16/2020

"This week, Hawaiʻi observed an increase in reports of landlords on multiple islands pressuring “arrangements” and sexual conduct from women unable to pay rent due to lost income from the COVID-19 crisis. This tells us that there is likely an increase in unreported incidents.

Landlord sexploitation is the latest byproduct of the pandemic. This is because the responses to COVID-19 — fast and furious in some states, and, in others, molasses slow — all failed to factor in gender and the “non-crisis” reality of male violence waiting around every corner for women, femme identified and non-binary people."

written by:

Khara Jabola-Carolus

Khara Jabola-Carolus

Read the full article by clicking here

SEXUAL HARASSMENT IN HOUSING PSA

4/16/2020

Sexual harassment in housing is illegal. If you or someone you know has been a victim, please call 1-844-380-6178 or email fairhousing@usdoj.gov

https://www.justice.gov/crt/sexual-harassment-housing-initiative-how-report

El Departamento de Justicia lanza una campaña de concientización pública con víctimas de acoso sexual en vivienda.

El acoso sexual en la vivienda es ilegal. Si usted o alguien que conoce ha sido víctima, por favor llame al 1-844-380-6178 o envíe un correo electrónico a fairhousing@usdoj.gov   

https://www.justice.gov/crt-espanol/iniciativa-en-contra-del-acoso-sexual-en-la-vivienda-c-mo-presentar-una-denuncia

To View the Full 30 sec. PSA, click here

WORKING WITH DOJ TO STOP SEXUAL HARASSMENT IN HOUSING

4/16/2020

This video explains how DOJ may be able to help if you or someone you know has been sexually harassed by a landlord, property manager, maintenance worker, or someone else with control over housing.  You will hear from people who have experienced sexual harassment about what that experience was like, as well as what it was like to report the harassment and work with DOJ.  You will also hear from a DOJ official about how DOJ may be able to help and some other resources that you may want to consider.

Sexual harassment in housing is illegal. If you or someone you know has been a victim, please call 1-844-380-6178 or email fairhousing@usdoj.gov

https://www.justice.gov/crt/sexual-harassment-housing-initiative-how-report

Click here to view the full video

Anna María Farías HUD Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity, Fair Housing News: April 9, 2020

4/16/2020

"Happy Fair Housing Month!
This year’s commemoration occurs at a time when a global pandemic is threatening the health of millions and dramatically changing the fundamental ways in which we socialize, travel, shop, even attend school. And there’s no quick end to it in sight, so please continue doing all you can to keep yourselves and your families safe."

To read the full statement, please click the following title: Hud Assistant Secretary For Fair Housing And Equal Opportunity Fair Housing Month Message

Justice Department Settles Sexual Harassment Lawsuit Against Owners and Manager of Kansas Rental Properties

2/04/2020

The Department of Justice announced today that Thong Cao and his wife, Mai Cao, will be obligated to pay $160,000 in damages and civil penalties to resolve a Fair Housing Act lawsuit alleging that Thong Cao sexually harassed numerous female tenants since at least 2009 at residential properties he owned or operated in Wichita, Kansas. Mai Cao is named as a defendant in this lawsuit because she owned or co-owned certain rental properties at which harassment took place.

Click here to read the DOJ news on this case

Sexual Harassment in Housing PSA

11/04/2019

Justice Department Launches Public Awareness Campaign with Victims of Sexual Harassment in Housing.

Sexual harassment in housing is illegal. If you or someone you know has been a victim, please call 1-844-380-6178 or email fairhousing@usdoj.gov
https://www.justice.gov/crt/sexual-harassment-housing-initiative-how-report

El Departamento de Justicia lanza una campaña de concientización pública con víctimas de acoso sexual en vivienda.

El acoso sexual en la vivienda es ilegal. Si usted o alguien que conoce ha sido víctima, por favor llame al 1-844-380-6178 o envíe un correo electrónico a fairhousing@usdoj.gov   
https://www.justice.gov/crt-espanol/iniciativa-en-contra-del-acoso-sexual-en-la-vivienda-c-mo-presentar-una-denuncia

Click here to see: Sexual Harassment in Housing--Public Service Announcement

Working with DOJ to Stop Sexual Harassment in Housing

11/04/2019

This video explains how DOJ may be able to help if you or someone you know has been sexually harassed by a landlord, property manager, maintenance worker, or someone else with control over housing.  You will hear from people who have experienced sexual harassment about what that experience was like, as well as what it was like to report the harassment and work with DOJ.  You will also hear from a DOJ official about how DOJ may be able to help and some other resources that you may want to consider.

Sexual harassment in housing is illegal. If you or someone you know has been a victim, please call 1-844-380-6178 or email fairhousing@usdoj.gov
https://www.justice.gov/crt/sexual-harassment-housing-initiative-how-report

Click here to view: Working with DOJ to Stop Sexual Harassment in Housing

Sexual Harassment in Housing Initiative-Recent Cases

8/28/2019

Robert N. Hatfield rented, sold, and financed homes in Wilkes County, North Carolina. DOJ received reports that he made unwelcome sexual comments to female applicants and tenants, groped female applicants and tenants, offered to reduce or eliminate payments in exchange for sexual acts, and took or threatened to take away housing benefits from residents who rejected his advances. DOJ filed a lawsuit on July 13, 2017 against him. He settled the case on April 12, 2019. The settlement prohibits Hatfield from renting, selling, or financing residential properties, and requires him to pay $550,000 to 17 residents and applicants he harassed.

Click here to read additional recent cases

SEXUAL HARASSMENT IN HOUSING INITIATIVE - NEWS

8/08/2019

HUD conducts Round Table Forums and pursuits cases of Sexual Harassment in Housing.

Click here to read more about recent DOJ cases and sexual harassment in housing

Justice Department Reports Major Increases in Victim Reporting and Number of Lawsuits Filed in One Year Since Launch of Initiative to Combat Sexual Harassment in Housing

8/08/2019

"The Justice Department today announced the one-year anniversary of its initiative to combat sexual harassment in housing. Since its launch in October 2017 and nationwide expansion in April 2018, the Department has seen a major upswing in both reporting and enforcement. Over the past year, the Department has:

  • Opened 34 new sexual harassment matters. This is more than any previous year and nearly five times the number of matters opened in the prior year."

Click here to read the DOJ press release on sex discrimination cases

WHEN YOUR SEXUAL HARASSER HAS KEYS TO YOUR APARTMENT

8/08/2019

Bringing Sexual Harassment in Housing Out from Behind Closed Doors

BY CHRISTINA COLÓN

"During Frank Tenuta’s 33-year tenure as an attorney, he’s heard various versions of how it begins.

“I was in the shower and all of a sudden I heard my landlord out there saying, ‘Hey, anybody here? I knocked and nobody answered so I just came in.’”

Tenuta’s first case of sexual harassment in housing occurred in the mid-to-late 1980s. The woman was behind on her rent. The landlord said he would look the other way if she performed sexual favors."

Click here to read Sojourner's article on sexual harassment in housing


HUD's Training Page for Preventing Sexual and Other Discriminatory Harassment in Housing

5/30/2019

"This page contains links that will help you understand what sexual harassment in housing looks like and how it violates the Fair Housing Act. The links will also identify ways to prevent and eliminate sexual harassment when it occurs."

Click here to go to HUD's training Page

April 2019 Humans of HUD features sexual harassment in housing testimonies

5/30/2019

This year [2019], throughout the month of April, the “Humans of HUD” photoblog will feature victims of sexual harassment in housing, highlighting the personal testimonies of survivors and those who helped them. 

Click here to view Humans of HUD photo blog

HUD Chief Uses Personal Experience to Encourage Women to Report Sexual Harassment in Housing

5/30/2019

"Raquel Hubbard-Hall lived in fear of her landlord, who stalked her inside her home.

Walter Ray Pelfrey would repeatedly show up to fix appliances that weren’t broken, and, once inside the Oklahoma City home Ms. Hubbard-Hall shared with three young children, he would make lewd remarks and sexual advances."

Click here to read the Washington Times Article

ABC News article: Uncovering Rampant Sexual Harassment in Housing Systems

4/01/2019

highlight ABC Nightline's recent story: Uncovering Rampant Sexual Harassment in Housing Systems, which features women who share their stories of abuse and the impact the experience had on their lives, as well as how HUD and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) helped them to obtain the justice they deserved, and in one case, a $2.7 million settlement. 

Click here for ABC News article: Uncovering rampant sexual harassment in housing

Cómo luchar contra el acoso sexual en la vivienda

3/05/2019

"Encontrar vivienda puede ser estresante, sobretodo si su presupuesto es ajustado, está solo y no cuenta con muchas opciones. Y cuando alguien que le ofrece un lugar para vivir lo acosa sexualmente, esto lo puede dejar sintiéndose inseguro y humillado."

Haga clic aquí para leer el artículo: Cómo luchar contra el acoso sexual en la vivienda

Fighting Back Against Sexual Harassment in Housing

3/05/2019

"Finding housing can be stressful, especially if money’s tight, you’re on your own, and you don’t have a lot of options. And when someone who can grant you a place to live sexually harasses you, it can leave you feeling unsafe and humiliated."

Click here to read the article: Fighting Back Against Sexual Harassment in Housing

Scotland County, North Carolina, Public Housing Agency and Two Former Employees to Pay Over $2.7 Million to Settle Sexual Harassment Lawsuits

3/05/2019

The Justice Department today [Wednesday, July 1, 2015] announced that Southeastern Community and Family Services Inc. (SCFS), a public housing agency that administers the Section 8 voucher program in Scotland County, North Carolina, and two of SCFS’ former employees have agreed to pay more than $2.7 million in monetary damages and civil penalties to settle consolidated Fair Housing Act lawsuits brought by the Justice Department and private plaintiffs.  SCFS was formerly known as Four-County Community Services Inc. 

Click here to read the DOJ Charges against Scotland County, North Carolina Housign Authority

Settlement Agreement: United States v. Kansas City Kansas Housing Authority, Victor L. Hernandez, Derrick Estelle Sr. and Ronald Cobb

3/05/2019

"This action was filed on October 26, 2015 by the United States to enforce Title
VIII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968, as amended by the Fair Housing Amendments Act of 1988 (“Fair Housing Act”), 42 U.S.C. §§ 3601-3631."

Click here to read the Settlement Agreement US v Kansas City Kansas Housing Authority

Justice Department Obtains $365,000 Settlement of Sexual Harassment Lawsuit Against Kansas City, Kansas, Housing Authority

3/05/2019

"The Justice Department today [Friday, September 29, 2017] announced that the Kansas City, Kansas, Housing Authority (KCKHA) and three of its former employees have agreed to pay $365,000 to resolve a sexual harassment lawsuit filed by the department in 2015.  So far this year, the Justice Department has filed or settled four cases alleging unlawful sexual harassment of women in housing."

Click here to read the DOJ charges

ABC News Article: Uncovering Rampant Sexual Harassment in Housing

3/05/2019

For Autumn Weaver, having a home meant everything.

"It was my independence," Weaver, 33, said. "It was me finally being able to do it on my own without any help."

Click here to read the ABC News article: Uncovering rampant sexual harassment in housing

ABC News Video: Uncovering Rampant Hexual harassment in Housing Systems

3/05/2019

ABC News  video Published on Feb 26, 2019

Khristen Sellers went to court after she says she was solicited for sex by a man who had the power to evict her - and dozens of other women with alarmingly similar stories came forward.

Click here to view the YouTube video (9 min 43 sec.)