"I'm not sure senior housing providers understand that they are required to abide by the Fair Housing Act...but oftentimes, until it hits so hard in the pocket books, it's not that important, " said Mira Tanner, the assistant director of the Metropoitan St. Louis Equal Housing Opportunity Council (EHOC) in an article published today by the St. Louis American.
Her organization filed complaints with 14 senior housing providers this week, alleging that their ads send a 'white only' message and violate the Fair Housing Act.
The EHOC released a study on September 25 that found that more than 90% of the models used in cited communities' promotional materials were white, which the EHOC claims is unacceptable.
The Fair Housing Act requires that advertisements for housing represent a region's demographic and the most recent census data for St. Louis indicates that 78.3% of the statistical area is white, 18.3% is black, and 3.4% is labeled "other".
If the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development finds that the housing providers have violated the law, "EHOC will go through a series of steps to bring the providers up to speed with the law and demand compensation for court and attorney fees."