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helping handsA judge in Alabama has ordered a landlord to pay $49,165 in damages and penalties.

The landlord was charged with discrimination after he objected to a white tenant dating an African American man.

Violations include:

Requiring the African American man to leave the premises because of his race;

Imposing a more restrictive guest policy on the family because they associated with an African American;

Making statements that indicated a preference based on race; and,

Engaging in coercion and intimidation for telling the family member who was dating the African American man that the family had to move out because the landlord didn’t believe in interracial dating.

The landlord turned off the water to the family’s home after observing the African American visitor. When the white female tenant asked what it would take to have the water turned back on, he told her to get rid of the black boyfriend.

The court order requires the landlord to pay the white residents and their African American friend $39,165 in damages and to pay the United States a $10,000 civil penalty. The order also requires the landlord to complete fair housing training before renting out any properties in the future. If he then chooses to rent his properties, he has to provide the local HUD office with copies of any advertisements or leases, and if any applicant is rejected, a statement identifying the reason for the rejection.

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  • GARY

    Where’s Governor Wallace when you need him?

    While this landlord is “over the top” on this issue, isn’t the magnitude of this fine also a bit excessive?

    One piece of information is missing here. Was the lease granted only to the girl? If so, ANY boyfriend who might be there over long periods of time might be in violation of the occupancy provisions – regardless of skin color. Not enough info here.

  • wow, what a fully obnoxious comment. cleary the commenter is rascist. first off, this is a perfectly reasonable fine because a slap on the wrist does not change behaviors. ever hear of the civil rights act? fair housing act? secondly, the landlord was quite clear that this was because her friend was Black. there is no doubt to be given. any references to visitation policy are merely racist smokescreens. if you dont like people of a particular race, dont own rental housing. put your money in something else. finally i’m not very happy with this article’s headline. “dissing boyfriend” indeed. i read the article thinking it would be an unfair fluff case, which is what the headline clearly implies. this was a concerted, racist campaign by the landlord, including hate speech and abusive behaviour (turning off someones water is illegal in Massachusetts, but it’s abusive everywhere). that is not “dissing.” it is very serious.

  • morelandlords

    Seems like an appropriate penalty, actually seems it’s a little low compared to some of the outrageous discrimination fines I have heard of. Judge was very fair to the landlord in this case IMHO, he could have been fined millions by some other judge.

    And you’re right the title is way off, should be “after discrimination against boyfriend” because this isn’t “dissing” at all.

    I wouldn’t go as far as “don’t be a landlord if you’re racist”. You can, but you need to check the racism at the door when you’re renting out property.

  • Pingback: Landlord Fined $50,000 for Discrimination Takes Own Life | American Apartment Owners Association()

  • Archie Stulc, Jr.

    Actually….Go Judge!

    The fine isn’t, in my opinion, unreasonable, and I love the fact that he has to attend a fair housing course before being ablwe to rent more property.

    I have, recently, worked for the owner of two small properties that repeatedly commented to me how certain races “just want to work the system and get over on you.” This is also the same person that didn’t want me to do a real background check because he just wanted to get the place rented.

    Guess who had to clean up the mess later. From live chickens in the basement to a tennant that claimed discrimination when we tried to evict him after not paying the rent for 2 months.

    With over 35 years of Caretaking and Management under my belt. I’ve only been in court twice for an eviction. Both times with this owner.

    Some people should not be allowed to rent property. Just my opinion.

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