NEW YORK (Legal Newsline) – New York Attorney General
Eric T. Schneiderman announced settlements with two real estate brokerage firms
after allegations they engaged in discrimination against prospective New York
City tenants using rental assistance vouchers.
The two companies, Lori & Associates LI Realty Inc.
(Lori & Associates) and Rapid Realty Bedford Stuyvesant (RBS), purportedly
discriminated against potential applicants in New York City with Living in
Communities (LINC) III rental assistance vouchers. These vouchers are part of a
program instituted by the New York City Department of Homeless Services and
Human Resources Administration that aims to assist victims of domestic
violence. By allegedly discriminating against these applicants, the defendants
violated a New York City law that prohibits discrimination in housing on the
basis of lawful source of income.
“My office is committed to protecting domestic violence
victims and eliminating source of income discrimination,” Schneiderman said.
“Victims of domestic violence face unspeakable hardships in every aspect of
their personal lives. Our hope is that these agreements will help to alleviate
the burden on domestic violence survivors trying to find a safe place to live –
especially in the midst of New York’s affordable housing crisis. Discrimination
against some the most vulnerable residents has no place in New York State.”