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KC Council extends fair housing protections to sexual, domestic violence survivors

The Kansas City Council approved fair housing protections for survivors of sexual assault, domestic violence and stalking.
The Kansas City Council approved fair housing protections for survivors of sexual assault, domestic violence and stalking. File photo

An ordinance granting fair housing protections to survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault and battery sailed through the City Council Thursday.

Council members and Mayor Sly James voted unanimously in favor of the measure, which came out of the Housing Committee’s work on developing a comprehensive affordable housing policy.

The ordinance bars landlords from refusing to rent to survivors on the basis of having been victims of domestic violence, sexual assault or battery, and prohibits discrimination against them.

City ordinance already bars discrimination based on race, color, religion, national origin, sex, disability, marital status, familial status, sexual orientation and gender identity.

A previous version of the measure extended the same protections to those receiving housing subsidies, commonly known as Section 8 vouchers, who may have a hard time finding a landlord who will accept that form of payment. That proposal was stripped out after opposition from landlords and some members of the Housing Committee.

Councilman Quinton Lucas, 3rd District at-large, said the committee may take up that issue at a later date.

Allison Kite reports on City Hall and local politics for The Star. She joined the paper in February 2018 and covered Midterm election races on both sides of the state line. She holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism with minors in economics and public policy from the University of Kansas.
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