US Court Considers Potential Landmark Fair Housing Case

Feb 7, 2018

70-year-old Marsha Wetzel's lawsuit is potentially landmark to LGBT people in the Fair Housing Act.
Credit Lambda Legal

A court heard oral arguments in a 70-year-old's potentially landmark case alleging a Chicago-area senior living center did nothing to stop residents from hurling slurs, spitting on her and physically harassing her because of her sexual orientation.

Tuesday's 7th U.S. Court of Appeals hearing came after a lower court tossed-out Marsha Wetzel's lawsuit against the Niles' Glen Saint Andrew Living Community. If reinstated, it could help establish that federal Fair Housing Act protections cover LGBT tenants harassed by other tenants.

 

 

One of the three-judge panelists, David Hamilton, sounded skeptical the law could be stretched to hold administrators liable for tenants' abusive behavior.

 

Judge Diane Wood suggested it could be. She said nobody says administrators "applauded" the abuse, only that they "shrugged their shoulders" when they learned about it.