Fair Housing - It's Your Right!

Fair Housing

The Human Rights Ordinance of Alachua County, Chapter 111 of the Alachua County Code, protects individuals from discrimination in housing on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, marital status, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, familial status, veteran or service member status, lawful source of income, citizenship status, being the victim of dating or domestic violence or stalking, or retaliation within the geographic boundaries of Alachua County.

Retaliation: It is unlawful to retaliate, or take adverse action against an individual because they opposed a discriminatory practice, filed a complaint, testified or participated in an investigation on any protected basis under this chapter.

Creating & Maintaining a Positive Housing Environment

Having a positive housing environment is integral to quality of life. Housing discrimination does happen, and it can have a negative impact on tenants and housing providers. The Alachua County Equal Opportunity Office serves as both a resource and a regulator by working to uphold the laws that protect against housing discrimination and by educating tenants and housing providers of their rights and responsibilities.

Protect Your Rights

If you believe you have been a victim of housing discrimination, you have the right to take action. The Alachua County Equal Opportunity Office can assist you.

Filing a Fair Housing complaint – A complaint must be filed with the Alachua County Equal Opportunity Office within 180 days of the date of the alleged discriminatory housing action.

Investi​​gation – If the dispute cannot be resolved through mediation/ conciliation, the Alachua County Equal Opportunity Office will conduct an impartial investigation.

Determination – The investigative report will be presented to the Alachua County Human Rights Board who will determine whether or not there is sufficient evidence to support a finding of unlawful discrimination. 

Notification – Both parties are notified of the determination and options under the law. This could result in an administrative hearing or civil action in a court of law.

Examples of Housing Discrimination

  • A realtor not showing an AfricanAmerican family housing within a predominantly White neighborhood, saying that they would not feel “at home” there.
  • Refusing to rent to a person in a wheelchair because he or she may require modifications to the unit.
  • Charging a single female with children a higher security deposit than a married couple with no children.
  • Refusing to rent a one-bedroom apartment to a same sex couple.
  • Ignoring a call from a prospective renter because he or she has an accent.
  • A landlord telling a potential renter who is transgender that an apartment is not available, and then renting it to someone else.
  • Circulating flyers warning neighbors that terrorists are taking over the neighborhood after a Muslim family inquires about a house for sale.

Discriminatory Housing Practices

The following are unlawful and discriminatory housing practices because of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, marital status, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, familial status, veteran or service member status, lawful source of income, citizenship status, being the victim of dating or domestic violence or stalking, or retaliation​:

  • Refusing to sell, rent or lease housing to an interested tenant or buyer.
  • Applying different sale, rental or occupancy terms for different people.
  • Misrepresenting the availability of housing when housing is in fact available.
  • Providing inferior conditions, terms, facilities or privileges in connection with housing.
  • Steering customers to a certain neighborhood, or refusing to serve certain customers by real estate professionals.
  • Redlining or limiting lending in a particular area because of the demographics of that area or imposing different terms or conditions on a loan.
  • Refusing to permit reasonable modifications when accommodations may be necessary for an individual with a disability to use and enjoy their dwelling.
  • Harassing tenants and homeowners in connection with housing accommodations.​

Contact

Equal Opportunity
12 S.E. 1st Street, 1st Floor
Gainesville, FL 32601

352-374-5275
TDD/TTY Users: please call 711 (Florida Relay Service)
Alachua County is an
Equal Opportunity Employer
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Facts on Filing

The alleged discriminatory act occurred in the geographic boundaries of Alachua County. 

If any municipality in Alachua County has in force or adopts its own human rights ordinance, such municipal ordinance shall prevail over the ​Human Rights Ordinance of Alachua County to the extent of any conflict between the two ordinances.​


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 Content Editor