Federal and State law prohibits housing discrimination based on, but not limited to the following: race, creed, color, disability, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, military status, age, sex, marital status, familial status or source of income.
Ontario County complies with the federal Fair Housing Act and the New York State Human Rights Law. The County is committed to promoting fair housing choice for all people.
Fair Housing Act
The Fair Housing Act protects people from discrimination when they are renting or buying a home, getting a mortgage, seeking housing assistance, or engaging in other housing-related activities. Additional protections apply to federally-assisted housing.
What is Prohibited?
In the Sale and Rental of Housing:
It is illegal discrimination to take any of the following actions because of race, color, religion, sex (including gender identity and sexual orientation), disability, familial status, or national origin:
- Refuse to rent or sell housing
- Refuse to negotiate for housing
- Otherwise make housing unavailable
- Set different terms, conditions or privileges for sale or rental of a dwelling
- Provide a person different housing services or facilities
- Falsely deny that housing is available for inspection, sale or rental
- Make, print or publish any notice, statement or advertisement with respect to the sale or rental of a dwelling that indicates any preference, limitation or discrimination
- Impose different sales prices or rental charges for the sale or rental of a dwelling
- Use different qualification criteria or applications, or sale or rental standards or procedures, such as income standards, application requirements, application fees, credit analyses, sale or rental approval procedures or other requirements
- Evict a tenant or a tenant’s guest
- Harass a person
- Fail or delay performance of maintenance or repairs
- Limit privileges, services or facilities of a dwelling
- Discourage the purchase or rental of a dwelling
- Assign a person to a particular building or neighborhood or section of a building or neighborhood
- For profit, persuade, or try to persuade, homeowners to sell their homes by suggesting that people of a particular protected characteristic are about to move into the neighborhood (blockbusting)
- Refuse to provide or discriminate in the terms or conditions of homeowners insurance because of the race, color, religion, sex (including gender identity and sexual orientation), disability, familial status, or national origin of the owner and/or occupants of a dwelling
- Deny access to or membership in any multiple listing service or real estate brokers’ organization
In Mortgage Lending:
It is illegal discrimination to take any of the following actions based on race, color, religion, sex (including gender identity and sexual orientation), disability, familial status, or national origin:
- Refuse to make a mortgage loan or provide other financial assistance for a dwelling
- Refuse to provide information regarding loans
- Impose different terms or conditions on a loan, such as different interest rates, points, or fees
- Discriminate in appraising a dwelling
- Condition the availability of a loan on a person’s response to harassment
- Refuse to purchase a loan
The Fair Housing Act makes it illegal to harass persons because of race, color, religion, sex (including gender identity and sexual orientation), disability, familial status, or national origin. Among other things, this forbids sexual harassment.
In addition, it is illegal discrimination to:
- Threaten, coerce, intimidate or interfere with anyone exercising a fair housing right or assisting others who exercise the right
- Retaliate against a person who has filed a fair housing complaint or assisted in a fair housing investigation
How do I File a Complaint?
If you believe you have been a victim of housing discrimination, contact Ontario County's Fair Housing Officer at 585-396-4455 or visit the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) website or call the New York State Department of State at 518-474-4429 or New York State Division of Human Rights at 844-862-8703.
- Ontario County Fair Housing Plan
- Board of Supervisors Resolutions
- Supreme Court Fair Housing Decision 2015
- Title 24 - Housing and Urban Development Part 100 (Discriminatory Conduct Under the Fair Housing Act)
- United States Department of Housing and Urban Development
- New York State Division of Human Rights
- Buffalo HUD Office
- Law NY
- Fair Housing Poster