Five New York City landlords and brokers came under scrutiny by the city Commission on Human Rights which charges them with discrimination for repeatedly refusing to accept housing vouchers. Our Susan Jhun has the details.
After being turned away 27 times by landlords refusing to accept her Section 8 vouchers, Millicent Carty filed complaints with the city Commission on Human Rights.
"I was almost embarrassed to mention I had a voucher because the minute I mentioned it the doors were closed," said Millicent Carty, a former Section 8 tenant.
A practice that violates city human rights law and one the commission is cracking down on in its recent investigation of five large landlords and brokerage firms including Parkchester South Condominiums, River Park Residences, Goldfarb Properties, Martini Properties and ABECO Management.
"We have found repeat violations by these landlords and their agents," said Hollis Pfitsch, Deputy Commissioner for the city's Commission on Human Rights.
The Commission filed these complaints on behalf of the city charging "pattern or practice" discrimination for repeatedly refusing to accept government assistance housing vouchers, including Section 8 and Living in Communities (LINC) vouchers.
"These landlords are saying we need working income as opposed to income from government assistance and that's the same as saying we don't accept your voucher," Deputy Commissioner Pfitsch said.
We reached out to the five landlords and brokerage firms involved in this investigation and received a response from only two.
A lawyer representing Parkchester South Condominiums told us they treat all applicants in full compliance with all applicable laws and are in the process of assessing the merits of the complaints.
A spokesman for River Park Residences told us it currently has 40 tenants using LINC housing vouchers and all claims that anyone was turned away for declaring a subsidy of any kind are just false.
A city spokesperson confirmed there are 39 clients using vouchers that reside at River Park.
Nonetheless, the commission stands by the findings of its investigation.
The agency is currently investigating over 200 property owners and brokers in the city.