Professor Denied Housing Based on Old Criminal Record

September 02, 2015

Clifford Washington, an associate professor and human resources professional, was excited when he and his wife found the perfect home.  But when they tried to buy it, Sun Homes, which owned the property, turned them away on the grounds that Mr. Washington has an old criminal record.  The ACLU of Michigan wrote to Sun Homes informing them that a blanket policy denying housing to people with criminal records violates the federal Fair Housing Act because disproportionate numbers of African Americans, like Mr. Washington, have criminal convictions.  In response, Sun Homes agreed to change their policies and allowed the Washingtons to purchase the home.  

(ACLU Attorney Miriam Aukerman.)

 

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