Lake Co. Housing Authority to pay $60,000
WASHINGTON, DC – January 12, 2010 – (RealEstateRama) — Two elderly sisters will continue living together under an agreement announced today by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the Lake County Housing Authority (LCHA) in Grayslake, Illinois.
The agreement settles a housing discrimination complaint brought by John Marshall Law School Fair Housing Legal Clinic on behalf of the sisters. In addition, the housing authority will pay $20,000 to each sister, $20,000 to the law school, and forgive up to $10,000 in disputed past due rent.
“We are absolutely delighted these sisters can remain together as a family,” said John Trasviña, HUD Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity. “Today, more and more people face the challenges of caring for their loved ones. The Fair Housing Act means that landlords should make reasonable accommodations – in this case, by allowing the care giving sister to stay in their home.
In November of 2008, an elderly, developmentally disabled tenant filed a discrimination complaint with HUD alleging that the Lake County Housing Authority failed to provide her reasonable accommodation, as required by the Fair Housing Act. The tenant is a participant in the HUD’s Housing Choice Voucher Program (Section 8) and lives with her sister, who acts as her live-in caregiver. LCHA’s rental policy did not allow family members to serve as live-in caregivers. As a reasonable accommodation to the family, the housing authority will allow the elderly resident’s sister to live in the unit as her caregiver and will adjust her monthly rent based on this new policy.
HUD’s Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity 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 should contact HUD at 1-800-669-9777 (voice), 800-927-9275 (TTY). Additional information is available at www.hud.gov/fairhousing.
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.