FHC Settles Case for Wheelchair User Forced to Crawl into Home

We are pleased to report that Tankson v Randolph Court Apartments has settled.

Sarah Tankson, who has a debilitating neurological disorder known as dystonia and uses a wheelchair, contacted the Fair Housing Center in January 2017 for help with a request for reasonable accommodation. Prior to signing a lease at Randolph Court in Ann Arbor, she was told in writing that she could install a wheelchair ramp at her unit in order for her to get into her home.

According to the lawsuit, once Ms. Tankson moved in, Randolph Court Apartments management told her that she must remove her temporary ramp and stow it away after each use. Because it was not possible for her to stow and then reconstruct the ramp each time she needed to use it, she and her aide complied by removing the materials, thus forcing Ms. Tankson to remain shut in her apartment or crawl out of her unit on days she required outside care. Ms. Tankson missed many medical appointments as a result of being unable to safely leave her apartment, which caused the symptoms of her disability to worsen.

Only after repeated intervention by the Fair Housing Center, as well as local media coverage, did Randolph Court allow the ramp installation. The case was filed in Federal Court, settled for a non-disclosed amount, and Sarah can now access her home.

Read the full story here

(clockwise from top left)
Ms. Tankson’s health aide Karen Kelsey, FHC staff Niki Green, and Sarah Tankson celebrating the installation of Sarah’s ramp with a cake and ice cream party at the FHC office.

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New Criminal Background & Housing Fact Sheet

The Fair Housing Center is pleased to announce the release of our seventh Fair Housing Fact Sheet. The new fact sheet is titled “Fair Housing, Criminal Background & Arrest Record.”

You can find all of our fact sheets here.

 

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Allegation of Sexual Harassment leads to Fair Housing Lawsuit

Fair Housing Center of Southeast & Mid Michigan

PO Box 7825, Ann Arbor, MI  48107   (877) 979-FAIR
www.fhcmichigan.org

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

August 17, 2017

Media Contacts: Pam Kisch, (877) 979-3247; Attorney Steve Tomkowiak, (248) 543-1600

A copy of the filed complaint is available upon request.

Allegation of Sexual Harassment leads to
Fair Housing Lawsuit

Ypsilanti –

Jennifer L. Daugherty contacted the Fair Housing Center in August 2016 to file a sexual harassment complaint against her Ypsilanti Township landlord, Michael Carpenter. Ms. Daugherty stated that she had been receiving unwelcome texts at all times of the day and night, unannounced visits, and other unwanted attention from her landlord for over a year. The defendant harassed and intimidated her, repeatedly asking her to go out with him, spend time with him, and even going as far as to leave a present under her pillow while she was away.

Ms. Daugherty’s text responses varied from “no” to “stop this” to several months of ignoring his constant demands and sexual innuendos. According to the lawsuit, “Defendant twice initiated eviction proceedings against Daugherty in retaliation for Daugherty’s refusals to enter into a relationship with Defendant, and thus grant him sexual favors.” Ms. Daughtery wanted to continue to live in the apartment only because she needed to help care for her grandmother, who lived next door and was afflicted with Alzheimer’s. Continue reading

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Criminal Background and Housing Info Session

Heard This?

“We have a blanket ‘no felony’ policy”
“If you served time in the last 20 years, we won’t take you”
“We don’t even look an application if you have a criminal record”
“Arrested? You can’t live here”

If any of these comments affect your life (or the lives of your family and friends) we encourage you to come this free community event in downtown Ypsilanti. The Fair Housing Center will present on the new HUD rule that addresses criminal background and housing, provide information on help that is available, and allow time for questions from attendees.

Advocates, please share this training information to previously incarcerated individuals and their families.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017
Downtown Ypsilanti (location given at registration)
​6:00-8:00 pm / Food and drinks provided / FREE

Registration Required. Space is limited. 877-979-3247

Eventbrite - Criminal Background and Housing Info Session

Brought to you by the Fair Housing Center, AFSC-MCJPNation Outside, and the Michigan Council on Crime and Delinquency. This program is possible in part thanks to a grant by United Way of Washtenaw County.

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Dates Set for Housing Advocates Training

Housing Advocates Training is designed to help social service professionals gain a working knowledge of fair housing law, landlord/tenant law, and housing subsidy programs.

Housing Advocates Training will be held on Tuesday, September 19th from 9:15-5 PM.
Welfare Policy Seminar will be held on Wednesday, September 20th from 9:15-11:45 AM.

Details and Registration information can be found here.

This two-day training is an excellent resource for anyone working as an advocate (clients/consumers also welcome). Housing Advocates Training (HAT) is a full day, Welfare Policy Seminar (WPS) is an optional three-hour session. Trainers include staff and attorneys from the Fair Housing Center of Southeast & Mid Michigan, the Michigan Poverty Law Program, and Legal Services of South Central Michigan. Registration is required.

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