April 13, 2010
HUD GAINS RELIEF FOR VICTIMS IN LAS VEGAS HOUSING DISCRIMINATION CASE
Apartment complex establishes fund for families with children
SAN FRANCISCO - The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) settled a housing discrimination complaint filed against the Harbor Island Apartments in Las Vegas, Nevada, for allegedly offering different rental
terms and conditions for families with children under eighteen years of age and having overly restrictive rules and policies regarding children.
The Fair Housing Act prohibits housing discrimination based on race, color, national origin, religion, sex, familial
status, and disability.
"Families with children should not be subjected to different, discriminatory rules," stated Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity John Trasviña. "We are pleased Harbor Island has settled this matter and will compensate families who were victimized by their past policies."
The Settlement Agreement calls for Harbor Island Apartments to set up an interest bearing escrow account in the amount of $5,000 which will be available for persons who were harmed by discriminatory rules harassing children in common areas, spas, fitness areas, pool areas or rental office without adult supervision. There was also a 9:00 pm curfew for anyone under age 18.
The complex ended the policies in September 2009. In order to obtain compensation from the escrow fund, a family must present evidence that it resided at the complex anytime between September 2008 and September 2009, and included at least one child under age 18 living there. HUD will review all claims prior to authorizing payment.
Families who believe they may be entitled to compensation from the fund may contact HUD to file a claim by writing Chuck Hauptman, HUD Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity, 600 Harrison Street 3rd floor, San Francisco, California 94107, or they may call (415) 489-6536, or call 1-800-347-3739, extension 6536.
After sixty days from the date of the settlement, any monies not disbursed from the escrow account will be
conveyed to a nonprofit organization to perform outreach and education on fair housing in the Las Vegas area.
Harbor Island Apartments will advertise the availability of the fund in a local newspaper.
HUD and its partners in the Fair Housing Assistance Program investigate more than 10,000 housing discrimination complaints annually. People who believe they are the victims of housing discrimination may contact HUD at 1-800-669-9777 (voice), 800-927-9275 (TTY) or going on line at http://www.hud.gov/complaints/housediscrim.cfm.
HUD is the nation's housing agency committed to sustaining homeownership; creating affordable housing opportunities for low-income Americans; and supporting the homeless, elderly, people with disabilities and people living with AIDS. The Department also promotes economic and community development ad enforces the nation's
fair housing laws. More information about HUD and its programs is available on the Internet at www.hud.gov and espanol.hud.gov.