On December 3, 2012, at the urging of the Greater New Orleans Fair Housing Action Center (GNOFHAC), the New Orleans Mission agreed to implement a policy of non-discrimination. The agreement ends a nearly yearlong process of negotiation over the Mission’s previous, longstanding policy of refusing shelter to women who are more than six months pregnant. The matter stemmed from the Mission’s refusal to house a woman because she was seven months pregnant.
The Mission committed to adopt and adhere to a policy of non-discrimination, undergo fair housing training, and provide financial restitution to GNOFHAC’s client. Under the Mission’s new policy, families with children and pregnant women will now be able to find shelter at the Mission.
GNOFHAC commends the Mission for working to resolve the housing discrimination charges against it amicably. Furthermore, the Center applauds its client’s courage in coming forward with her complaint to ensure that no other person in her situation has to experience the hardships she faced.
GNOFHAC Executive Director James Perry comments, “We applaud the Mission for taking the steps necessary to ensure that all homeless individuals in New Orleans can access the much needed services that the organization offers, regardless of their race, color, national origin, religion, sex, family status, or disability. The resolution of this case is timely, as we once again approach a holiday season where not everyone in our community has access to the homes that they need. This year, because of the Mission’s commitment to ensure fairness in their programs, we can all rest assured that individuals in need will receive the equitable treatment that they deserve.”
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