Three disturbing facts remain 46 years after the passage of the Fair Housing Act: Intentional discrimination still exists; the victims of discriminatory practices and policies often are unaware that they are victims; numerous South Carolinians are unaware that the S.C. Human Affairs Commission exists to eradicate housing discrimination.
The Fair Housing Act makes it illegal to discriminate based on race, color, religion, national origin, gender, familial status or disability. Housing discrimination supports segregation, which affects our schools, jobs, health care and quality of life.
The Fair Housing Act does not protect just African-Americans. Every resident of South Carolina is in one of the protected classes, and anyone who believes that he or she has been or is about to be discriminated against can file a fair housing complaint. Also, any S.C. residents can file a complaint, not just citizens.
Disability was the most common basis of complaints filed last year in South Carolina, followed closely by race. Some people intentionally discriminate against others, while many simply are unaware of the law.
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For more information, visit us at schac.sc.gov or write to P.O. Box 4490, Columbia, SC 29240.
Delaine A. Frierson
S.C. Fair Housing Director