PA Human Relations Act

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OFFICIAL NOTICE 

 
Responsibilities of Owners of Real Property under the PENNSYLVANIA HUMAN RELATIONS ACT of October 27, 1955, P.L. 744, as amended 
 
The Pennsylvania Legislature has made it illegal: To refuse to sell, lease, finance, or otherwise deny or withhold residential or commercial property located in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania because of any person's. . . 
 
Race, Color, Sex, Religious Creed, Ancestry, National Origin, Handicap or Disability, Age or Familial Status 
 
Or 
 
To refuse to lease, or discriminate in the terms of selling or leasing, or in furnishing facilities, services or privileges in connection with the ownership, occupancy or use of any residential or commercial property because of any person's. 
 
Race, Color, Sex, Religious Creed, Ancestry, National Origin, Handicap or Disability, Age or Familial Status, Use of a Guide or Support Animal Because of the Blindness, Deafness or Physical Handicap of the User or Because the User is a Handler or Trainer of Support or Guide Animals 
 
Or 
 
Construct, operate, offer for sale, lease or rent or otherwise make available housing or commercial property which is not accessible. The term "accessible" means being in compliance with the applicable standards as provided under the Fair Housing Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and the Universal Accessibility Act. 
 
 
IT IS ALSO UNLAWFUL FOR: 
 
Any person to retaliate against an individual because the individual has filed a complaint with the Commission, or has otherwise participated in any Commission proceeding, or for any person to aid or abet any unlawful discriminatory practice under the Human Relations Act 
 
 
OR, BECAUSE OF: 
 
The handicap or disability of an individual with whom the person is known to have a relationship or association. 
 
 
OTHER APPLICABLE LAWS EXPLAINED: 
 
The CIVIL RIGHTS ACT OF 1866 provides that all citizens of the United Sates shall have the same right in every state and territory thereof to inherit, purchase, lease, sell, hold and convey real and personal property, and prohibits all racial and ethnic discrimination without exception in the sale or rental of property. 
 
TITLE VIII of the FEDERAL CIVIL RIGHTS ACT OF 1968 prohibits discrimination in housing based on race, color, sex, religion, national origin, familial status, handicap or intimidation. 
 
COURT AWARDS: Under either of the above laws, federal courts may award successful plaintiffs actual and punitive damages, attorney's fees, and injunctive relief. 
 
TITLE IX of the CIVIL RIGHTS ACT OF 1968 provides criminal penalties for the willful or attempted injury, intimidation or interference with any person because of his/her race, color, sex, religion, national origin, familial status, handicap who is selling, purchasing, renting, financing or occupying any dwelling or contracting or negotiating for the sale, purchase, rental, financing or occupation of any dwelling or applying for or participating in any service, organization or facility relating to the business of selling or renting dwellings. 
 
REAL ESTATE BROKERS LICENSE ACT OF MAY 1, 1929, P.L. 1216, as amended, makes it unlawful for a real estate broker or salesperson to accept a listing with an understanding that illegal discrimination in the sale or rental of property is to be practiced. 
 
LOCAL ORDINANCES prohibiting discrimination in housing may exist in your locality, and should be consulted for any additional protection these ordinances may provide. 
 
AMERICANS WITH DISABILITIES ACT OF 1990 prohibits discrimination because of a disability in employment, public service and public accommodation (which includes commercial property). 
 
UNIVERSAL ACCESSIBILITY ACT (PA ACT OF 166) requires accessibility for persons with a disability in certain new and rehabilitated residential and commercial property. 
 
 
TO OWNERS OF REAL PROPERTY WITHIN THE COMMONWEALTH: 
 
YOU ARE LEGALLY RESPONSIBLE for your own actions and the actions of any agent acting on your behalf. Under the Pennsylvania Human Relations Act and other state and federal legislation which prohibit discrimination in housing, you bear the responsibility for seeing that discriminatory acts do not occur. 
 
PROTECT YOURSELF by providing your agent with verbal and written instructions that in all transactions relating to your property - including all services provided in connection with the transactions - you wish to comply with all civil rights ordinances including, but not limited to: The Pennsylvania Human Relations Act, The Civil Rights Act of 1866, Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, and the Universal Accessibility Act (PA Act 166). 
 
UNDER THE PENNSYLVANIA HUMAN RELATIONS ACT, NEITHER YOU NOR YOUR BROKER/SALESPERSON OR AGENT MAY. . . 
 
Steer or otherwise direct a property seeker's attention to a particular neighborhood based on the race, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, sex, handicap or disability, age, familial status, or use of a guide or support animal because of the blindness, deafness or physical handicap of the user, or because the user is a handler or trainer of support or guide animals, of either the property seekers or persons already residing in that neighborhood. 
 
Volunteer information to or invite questions from property seekers concerning the race, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, sex, handicap or disability, age, familial status, or use of a guide or support animal because of the blindness, deafness or physical handicap of the user or because the user is a handler or trainer or support or guide animals, including persons already residing in a neighborhood. 
 
Answer questions from or initiate a discussion with persons who are selling, renting, or otherwise making housing or commercial property available concerning the race, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, sex, handicap or disability, age, familial status, or use of a guide or support animal because of the blindness, deafness or physical handicap of the user or because the user is a handler or trainer of support or guide animals of prospective buyers, applicants, or others seeking housing. 
 
Engage in certain practices which attempt to induce the sale, or discourage the purchase or lease, of housing accommodations or commercial property by making direct or indirect reference to the present or future composition of the neighborhood in which the facility is located with respect to race, color, religion, sex, ancestry, national origin, handicap or disability, age, familial status, or guide or support animal dependency. 
 
Engage in any course of action which could be constructed as reluctant or delayed service having the effect of withholding or making unavailable housing accommodations or commercial property to persons because of their race, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, sex, handicap or disability, age, familial status, or use of a guide or support animal. 
 
 
RULES AND REGULATIONS OF THE PENNSYLVANIA HUMAN RELATIONS COMMISSION 
 
(16 Pennsylvania Code 43.14) require that all licensed brokers or salespersons with whom you list your property for sale or rent shall provide you with a copy of this notice in order that you may be made aware of the laws you are required to obey. 
 
 
For further information, write, phone or visit: 
 
Headquarters Office 
Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission 
Executive House, 101 S. 2nd Street, Suite 300 
P.O. Box 3145 
Harrisburg, PA 17105-3145 
 
Telephone: 
(717)783-8274 (voice) 
(717)783-9308(TT) 
(717)787-4087 (TT) 
 
 
To file a complaint contact the regional office nearest you: 
 
Pittsburgh
11th Floor State Office Building
300 Liberty Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15222-1210
(412) 565-5395 (VOICE)
(412) 565-5711 (TT)
 
Harrisburg
Uptown Shopping Plaza
2971-E 7th Street
Harrisburg, PA 17110-2123
(717) 787-9784 (VOICE)
(717) 787-7279 (TT)
 
Philadelphia
711 State Office Building
Broad and Spring Garden Streets
Philadelphia, PA 19130-2496
(215) 560-2496
(215) 560-3599 (TT)
 
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