Arkansas: HIV-Fear Claim Fails as Shelter Is Cleared
September 1, 2009
After an all-day hearing on Friday, the Arkansas Fair Housing Commission voted 4-3 to reject a discrimination complaint filed against a local homeless shelter by an HIV-positive man and his wife. The couple alleged that Our House evicted the man after one day because he has the virus.
Our House attorney Dan Herrington called the commission's response overly aggressive. He said there was no evidence for a finding regarding the man's wife, as she was never rejected for residency, and that one count involving the man was wrongly filed. Herrington said the man should have explained to staff members that he needed no special care and asked Mjarten to reconsider, but that instead he left the facility angry and asked for $50,000 to settle the matter. Herrington said Our House staff will receive additional training about complying with housing laws.
Arkansas Democrat-Gazette (Little Rock)
08.29.2009; Seth Blomeley