HUD No. 07-023
March 1, 2007
HUD SETTLES PARKING ACCESSIBILITY CASE FOR $10,000
N.J. apartment owner and property manager agree to settle a disability discrimination complaint
WASHINGTON - The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development today announced that a judge has ordered the owner and property manager of a Fort Lee, N.J., cooperative apartment building to pay $10,000 to a resident with a disability who alleged that his request for an indoor parking space within a short distance of his apartment was refused.
Robert Dublirer, who has multiple sclerosis and walks with forearm crutches, filed a complaint with HUD, wherein Mr. Dublirer alleged that 2000 Linwood Avenue Owners, Inc., the owner of Mediterranean Towers South, and its property manager, Rita Neary, denied his request for an accessible parking space. HUD investigated Mr. Dublirer's complaint, and issued a Charge of Discrimination in September 2006. In order to resolve the allegations in the Charge, the Cooperative agreed to provide Mr. Dublirer with an accessible parking space and $10,000.
The terms of the settlement were incorporated into a consent order, whereby the owner of Mediterranean Towers South, 2000 Linwood Avenue Owners, Inc., agreed to:
- immediately grant Mr. Dublirer's request for an accessible parking space;
- pay Mr. Dublirer $10,000 in damages;
- create and implement a reasonable accommodation policy for Mediterranean Towers South; and
- provide fair housing training to its employees.
"Mr. Dublirer should never have had to worry about each step as he tried to make his way to his apartment safely," said Kim Kendrick, HUD Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity. "We hope this settlement will remind all property owners and managers that the Fair Housing Act requires them to make exceptions to their policies, when necessary, for people with disabilities."
FHEO and its partners in the Fair Housing Assistance Program investigate approximately 10,300 housing discrimination complaints annually. People who believe they are the victims of housing discrimination should contact HUD at (800) 669-9777. Additional information is available at www.hud.gov/fairhousing.