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Home · Property Management · Latest News · Indiana housing providers accused of disability discrimination over assistance cat

pets cat legal service animal

A judge will hear the case brought by HUD against Bloomington landlords who denied housing to an IU grad student.

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development is charging Bloomington, Indiana’s Burnham Rentals, LLC, Burnham Place Apartments, LLC, two of its employees and others, with violating the Fair Housing Act.

The issue is with alleged disability discrimination against an Indiana University graduate student. That student has depression and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. She uses an assistance animal to help her.

According to the accusations, the “no pets” policy was applied to her assistance animal which kept her from having access to the housing.

“Not allowing someone with mental health disabilities to keep an assistance animal robs them of their independence as well as the opportunity to fully enjoy their home,” said Jeanine Worden, HUD’s Acting Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity.

The Fair Housing Act prohibits housing providers from denying or limiting housing to people with disabilities. It includes people with disabilities who have assistance animals that perform work or tasks, or that provide disability-related emotional support.

The accusations said the woman used a cat to alleviate her symptoms without medicine that had caused her side effects. Due to not being able to rent the apartment she wanted because of her cat, the student ended up renting another, more expensive, apartment farther from the university.

A judge will now hear the case.


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