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HOPE Complainants with Disabilities Fight For Their Rights

On August 4, 2015, Richard and Patricia Rogala filed a fair housing complaint with the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Broward County Human Rights Section against Riverside North Apartment, Inc. HOPE represented the Rogalas in this complaint. The complaint alleged that the Riverside North board of directors denied the Rogalas’ reasonable accommodation request for an assigned parking space nearest to their apartment. Mr. Rogala requires such a parking space because his disability makes walking difficult. The federal Fair Housing Act and the Broward County Human Rights Code of Ordinances make it illegal to deny reasonable accommodation requests made by people with disabilities who need them.

The Rogalas entered into a conciliation agreement with

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Denying Housing Over Criminal Record May Be Discrimination, HUD Says

The Department of Housing and Urban Development is making it easier for people with criminal records to find housing.

In new guidance, released Monday, HUD tells landlords and home sellers that turning down tenants or buyers based on their criminal records may violate the Fair Housing Act.

People with criminal records aren't a protected class under the Fair Housing Act, and the guidance from HUD's general counsel says that in some cases, turning down an individual tenant because of his or her record can be legally justified.

But blanket policies of refusing to rent to anybody with a criminal record are de facto discrimination, the department says — because of the systemic disparities of the American criminal justice system.

For the official HUD guidance, please

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