Fair Housing Center of West Michigan

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Fair Housing Laws

Fair housing rights are assured by federal, state and local fair housing laws.  These laws prohibit housing discrimination on the basis of specific "protected classes", which include race, color, religion, national origin, gender, familial status, disability, marital status, and age, among others protected by local laws.  In particular, the federal Fair Housing Act, the Michigan Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act, and local fair housing ordinances provide the basis for fair housing protection throughout West Michigan.  See below for more information on these and other fair housing laws. 

To view the full text of the law, click on the title.


Federal Laws
 

Civil Rights Act of 1866 (Reconstruction Act)

Overview: Enacted April 9, 1866, the Civil Rights Act of 1866 prohibits all racial discrimination in the sale or rental of property.  It granted citizenship and the same rights enjoyed by white citizens to all male persons in the United States "without distinction of race or color, or previous condition of slavery or involuntary servitude."
Protected classes: race and color

Fair Housing Act (Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968 as amended by Fair Housing Amendments Act)

Overview: Enacted on April 11, 1968, and amended in 1988, the federal Fair Housing Act provides the basis for fair housing rights and enforcement throughout the United States.  The Act also provides for accessibility requirements for covered multi-family housing built for first occupancy after March 13, 1991.
Protected classes: race, color, religion, national origin, gender, familial status and disability

Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act

Overview: Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability in programs and activities conducted by HUD or that receive financial assistance from HUD.  This includes public housing authorities, government run housing programs, public university housing, etc.   Learn more.
Protected class: disability

Housing for Older Persons Act

Overview: Effective May 3, 1999, HUD's final rule implementing the Housing for Older Persons Act of 1995 (HOPA) outlines the requirements for qualification for the housing for persons who are 55 years of age or older portion of the ‘‘housing for older persons’’ exemption established in the Fair Housing Act.  This exemption applies to the familial status provisions of the Fair Housing Act, but does not exempt the housing from the other provisions of the law.
 

Michigan Fair Housing Laws
 

Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act (Michigan Act 453 of 1976)

Overview: Effective March 31, 1977, the Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act prohibits discrimination throughout Michigan in the areas of employment, housing, public accommodations, public service, and educational facilities.
Protected classes (for housing): religion, race, color, national origin, sex, familial status, age and marital status

Persons with Disabilities Civil Rights Act (Michigan Act 220 of 1976)

Overview: Effective March 31, 1977, the Persons with Disabilities Civil Rights Act guarantees the opportunity to obtain employment, housing, and other real estate and full and equal utilization of public accommodations, public services, and educational facilities without discrimination because of a disability.  The PWDCRA provides additional rights for persons with disabilities to request and obtain reasonable accommodation and modifications.
Protected class: disability

 

Local Fair Housing Laws
 

Belding Fair Housing Ordinance

Protected classes: race, color, age, religion, sex, national origin, height, weight, familial status, marital status and handicap

City of East Grand Rapids Fair Housing Ordinance

Protected classes: religion, race, color, national origin, age, sex, height, weight, marital status, and handicap status

City of Grand Rapids Community Relations Commission Ordinance on Housing Discrimination

Protected classes:  race, color, creed, religion, national origin, ancestry, age, sex, marital status, familial status, handicapped status, source of lawful income, public assistance recipient status and gender orientation

City of Grand Rapids Fair Housing Ordinance

City of Holland Fair Housing Ordinance

Protected classes:  religion, race, color, national origin, age, sex, marital status and source of income

City of Kentwood Fair Housing Ordinance

Protected classes: race, creed, color, sex, marital status, religious belief, age, height, weight, national origin, disability and source of income

City of Muskegon Fair Housing Ordinance

Protected classes: religion, race, color, national origin, age, sex, marital status, and handicap

City of Muskegon Heights Fair Housing Ordinance

Protected classes: religion, race, color, national origin, age, sex, height, weight, familial status, marital status, and handicap status

City of Wyoming Fair Housing Ordinance

Protected classes: race, color, religion, national origin, age, sex, height, weight, handicap, source of income, familial status and marital status

Traverse City Fair Housing Ordinance

Protected classes: race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, height, weight, marital status, physical or mental disability, family status, sexual orientation, and gender identity
 


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Grand Rapids, MI 49507

Phone: 616-451-2980
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Fax: 616-451-2657

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