New York City is aggressively pursuing landlords and brokers who break the Human Rights Law, especially for source of income discrimination. In two city agencies, there are units committed only to address source of income discrimination .
Both units are helpful resources for voucher holders to use. Below outlines the differences between the unit at the Commission on Human Rights and the unit at Human Resource Administration. Contact information can be found here.
The Commission on Human Rights is a 5 person unit committed to defending individuals in discrimination cases against landlords and brokers. The unit has attornies on staff who work pro bono for voucher holders on legal cases against landlords and brokers. The Source of Income unit at CCHR also helps assist voucher holders with Pre-Complaint Intervention and can assist in finding missing information from reports by voucher holders. Through the Commission on Human Rights' unit, voucher holders have the ability to take their personal case of discrimination to court.
The Source of Income unit at HRA is made up of eight people. and files source of income discrimination lawsuits on behalf of New York City. This is the major difference between the unit and its counterpart at CCHR. At HRA, the attorneys do not take individual cases from voucher holders to court. Instead, they use the reports sent in by voucher holders to look for patterns of repeat offenders among both brokers and landlords. When they have enough evidence against one of these bad actors, the unit will file the lawsuit, and the prosecutor will be New York City. Reporting is incredibly important because it helps the unit identify trends and collect evidence to build a legal case. HRA's source of income unit can also assist with Pre-Complaint Intervention.