DFEH Settles Disability Discrimination Case Involving Suisun City Housing Authority
October 6, 2021
For Immediate Release
Housing voucher applicant will receive $75,000 and the city will change its policies
SACRAMENTO -The Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) resolved a disability discrimination complaint filed against the Suisun City Housing Authority by the mother of a minor son with intellectual and mental health disabilities.
The complaint alleged the Housing Authority refused to issue a housing voucher for a unit with a bedroom for the child’s live-in attendant. The family presented medical documentation of the need for a live-in attendant and received an appropriate voucher from the housing authority where the family previously lived.
The parties engaged in a voluntary mediation in DFEH’s Dispute Resolution Division, resulting in a settlement in which the Housing Authority will pay the complainant $75,000. “Housing authorities play a key role in ensuring Californians have a place to call home,” said DFEH Director Kevin Kish. “These authorities must have legally compliant policies and ensure their staff are trained to provide reasonable accommodations to people with disabilities.”
In addition to a monetary settlement, the Housing Authority will require its staff to undergo fair housing training. It will also modify its policies and practices regarding reasonable accommodations to: permit separate bedrooms for live-in attendants; not impose fees for reasonable accommodations; accept requests for accommodations in any verbal or written form; and clarify the scope of medical documentation it can seek when considering a reasonable accommodation request.
DFEH Senior Attorney Mediator Pamela Cohen mediated the case.
CRD is the state agency charged with enforcing California’s civil rights laws. Formerly known as the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH), the mission of CRD is to protect the people of California from unlawful discrimination in employment, housing, public accommodations, and state-fund programs and activities, and from hate violence and human trafficking. For more information, visit calcivilrights.ca.gov.