Oregon’s ban on section 8 housing discrimination

An Oregon law banning discrimination of section 8 housing applicants went into effect July 1st, 2014.

In July of 2013, House Bill 2639 was passed redefining ‘source of income’ for purposes of prohibiting discrimination in selling, renting or leasing real property.

In effect, a landlord or rental agency cannot advertise the terms on a property as ‘no section 8’ or deny an application souly on the basis of income.

Cara Carter with the Jackson County Housing Authority says,

“Tenants will still have to pass the background checks, the criminal, the credit, the landlord references. But the fact that they have a voucher, shouldn’t keep them out.”

NBC 5 news called several Craig’s List rental properties who supplied “no section 8” as a requirement and found that rental agencies and landlords are either unaware of the change or are in the process of changing their listings.

In an interview, Carter said the bill was both good and bad, in that it would remove some of the barriers that low-income families face but won’t fix the entire housing discrimination problem. Many landlords can still place income requirements on rentals or deny an applicant based on previous conduct, criminal history or credit score.

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