University Defends Against Allegations of Housing Discrimination

March 13, 2018
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The Justice Department recently sued a California-based university for allegedly refusing a reasonable accommodation request by a university employee to keep her emotional support animal in her university-owned apartment on campus.

The case dates back to 2014, when the university allegedly maintained a policy that banned pets, except for service animals as a reasonable accommodation for the emotional disabilities of a resident. The complaint alleged that the employee requested a reasonable accommodation and submitted documentation from her doctor, attesting to her disability due to an eating disorder and need to keep an emotional support animal to help her cope with her disability. Allegedly, the university denied the request and ordered her to remove the dog, which ultimately required her to resign from her position and move out.

The Justice Department filed the lawsuit after the employee filed a complaint with HUD, which conducted an investigation and issued a charge of discrimination.