Elected officials voice support of act aimed at those denied housing based off their criminal record
Several elected officials and leaders in the community are now voicing their support for the Fair Chance For Housing Act in a move to stop discrimination against those looking for housing.
The Fair Chance For Housing Act will stop landlords from denying housing to people based off their criminal record. Those who support the bill say thousands of New Yorkers have been denied housing because of their criminal history.
Along with landlords, building owners, agents, employees and real estate brokers would also not be allowed to look up a potential renter's criminal history. The bill was introduced by City Council Majority Leader Keith Powers as a way to curb the ongoing housing and homeless crisis. Those in support of the bill say that it is a crucial step to help people re-enter society.
Among those who do not support the bill, members of the Rent Stabilization Association, President Joseph Strasburg says in part, “Blame your city council representative, not your landlord, when a person with a criminal history of drug dealing, weapons possession, arson, domestic abuse, or other violent crimes moves in next door. This isn't fearmongering. It's a fact."
It's important to note that this act does not stop inquiries into the New York sex offender registry and federal housing. Thursday's rally will take place just hours before a hearing for the act. So far, about 30 out of the 51 members of the New York City Council support the legislation.