Community Settles Claims Its Rules Restricted Children’s Outdoor Play

August 25, 2014
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The owners and operators of a California community recently agreed to pay $80,000 to settle allegations that its rules discriminated against families with children in violation of the Fair Housing Act.

The lawsuit arose from HUD complaints filed by five families who lived at the 37-unit community. They alleged that the community enforced a rule that prohibited children from playing outside in the common grassy areas of the complex and stated that families would be evicted if they violated this rule.

In addition to the monetary settlement, the community agreed to implement a nondiscrimination policy, establish new enforcement procedures for rule violations, and undergo fair housing training.

“Federal law guarantees families with children the right to equal access to housing, including full access to their homes’ amenities and facilities,” Acting Assistant Attorney General Jocelyn Samuels for the Civil Rights Division said in a statement. “Settlements such as this one help ensure that all families can enjoy that right.”

“An apartment complex may not impose conditions on families with children that they do not impose on other residents,” added HUD’s Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity Gustavo Velasquez. “HUD and DOJ remain committed to enforcing fair housing laws that ensure all people share the same rights to use and enjoy their homes.”

Source: U.S. Department of Justice