Justice Department sues Garner

May 19, 2009 11:30:34 AM PDT
The US Department of Justice has its crosshairs on the small town of Garner - south of Raleigh.Washington officials are accusing the town's board of adjustment of disability discrimination. Specifically, that it violated the Fair Housing Act by not allowing men recovering from drug and alcohol addictions to live together as a reasonable accommodation for their disabilities.

The DOJ has sued Garner in federal court.

The case refers to a home chartered by Oxford House Inc., a non-profit organization that assists persons in addiction recovery. Officials say Garner permits up to six persons to live in the home, but it has refused to consider requests to increase the number to eight.

"The Fair Housing Act requires jurisdictions to make reasonable accommodations in their rules when necessary to provide persons with disabilities an equal opportunity to housing," offered said Loretta King with the Department of Justice.

The suit seeks monetary damages for the victims, a civil penalty and a court order requiring Garner to grant the requested accommodation.


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