WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development today announced it has reached a Conciliation/Voluntary Compliance Agreement with Wakeland Atmosphere, L.P., and FPI Management, Inc., the owner and management company for a HUD-subsidized apartment complex in San Diego, California, to settle allegations that they violated the Fair Housing Act when they refused to allow a tenant with disabilities to have a designated parking space. Read the agreement.
The Fair Housing Act prohibits housing providers from denying or limiting housing to persons with disabilities. In addition, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability by recipients of federal financial assistance. Under both statutes, it is illegal to deny reasonable accommodation requests that may be necessary to allow persons with disabilities the opportunity to use and enjoy their home, such as the granting of reserved parking spaces to persons with mobility disabilities.
“Reasonable accommodations make a world of difference to persons who find the most routine things, like walking from a parking lot to their home, challenging,” said Anna María Farías, HUD Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity. “Hopefully, today’s settlement will send a loud and clear message to housing providers that HUD is committed to ensuring that they meet their obligations under the nation’s fair housing laws.”
The case came to HUD’s attention when a woman with physical disabilities filed a complaint alleging that FPI Management refused to accommodate her by granting a request for a designated parking space. As a result, the woman alleged she was forced to navigate a steep incline each time she exited her building’s parking garage after parking in one of the regular spaces. FPI Management and Wakeland Atmosphere deny discriminating against the tenant but agreed to settle her complaint.
Under the terms of the agreement, FPI Management, Inc., and Wakeland Atmosphere, L.P., agree to pay the resident $12,500 and ensure that property managers at the resident’s apartment complex attend fair housing training.
People who believe they have experienced discrimination may file a complaint by contacting HUD’s Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity at (800) 669-9777 (voice) or (800) 927-9275 (TTY). Housing discrimination complaints may also be filed by going to hud.gov/fair housing, or by downloading HUD’s free housing discrimination mobile application, which can be accessed through Apple and Android devices.