The Fair & Equal Housing Act

The Fair & Equal Housing Act

Pride month is a great time to celebrate how far we've come in equality and representation. It's also a time to see how we can make more positive change in the world. An area of change that is important in real estate and housing is the Fair Housing Act. 

LGBTQ+ people can still be discriminated against based on Federal Fair Housing Laws.
LGBTQ+ people face a significant degree of discrimination in housing, which can take a variety of forms. They can be denied housing, charged higher rates for rentals or mortgages, or removed from housing. Currently, the Fair Housing Act prohibits discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, disability, familial status, and national origin. To date, there is no federal law that thoroughly protects LGBTQ+ people from housing descrimination. 
 
Is there anything being done to make change?
In response to this disparity and to protect the rights of LGBTQ+ people, the Fair & Equal Housing Act has been created. "This act would provide consistent and explicit non-discrimination protections for LGBTQ+ people in housing by adding “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” as protected characteristics." 

"The Fair and Equal Housing Act also clarifies existing law to ensure that housing protections apply to anyone who experiences discrimination because they are perceived as or associate with someone of a different race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, familial status, or national origin."

What is the status of The Fair & Equal Housing Act? 
"The bipartisan Fair and Equal Housing Act was introduced in the House of Representatives by Reps. Brad Schneider (D-IL) and Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA) on June, 30, 2021. This bill has not yet been reintroduced in the Senate."

As of September 2021, only 28 states and the District of Columbia prohibit discrimination in housing based on both sexual orientation and gender identity. Another state, Wisconsin, bans discrimination in housing based on sexual orientation only.

What can I do to help?
Write to your representative and senators. Start by finding them HERE. Provide a brief but specific personal story about how this bill would affect your life. If you don’t have a personal story, you can write about someone you know who has been or could be impacted.
 
For more information, please contact legislation@hrc.org. Read about other Federal Legislation pertinent to the LGBTQ community HERE.


HAPPY PRIDE!
- Team IHO