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Record No: Res 31669    Version: Council Bill No:
Type: Resolution (Res) Status: Adopted
Current Controlling Legislative Body City Clerk
On agenda: 6/13/2016
Ordinance No:
Title: A RESOLUTION encouraging as a best practice the use of an individualized tenant assessment using the Fair Housing Act's discriminatory effects standard to avoid Fair Housing Act violations when criminal history is used as a screening criterion in the landlord screening process.
Sponsors: Lisa Herbold
Attachments: 1. Att A - HALA Recommendations, 2. Att B - Selecting a Tenant Screening Agency V1, 3. Att C - Engrossed Senate Bill 6413 V1, 4. Att D - Recommended Best Practices To Do and Not Do in Drafting and Implementing a Criminal Conviction Screening Policy V1, 5. Att A - Selecting a Tenant Screening Agency: Guideline for Property Management in Affordable Housing V1, 6. Att B - Engrossed Senate Bill 6413 V1, 7. Att C - Recommended Best Practices To Do and Not Do in Drafting and Impementing a Criminal Conviction Screening Policy
Supporting documents: 1. Proposed Substitute, 2. Baghaw Amendment (Added; 6-13-16), 3. Summary and Fiscal Note, 4. Signed Resn 31669
CITY OF SEATTLE
RESOLUTION __________________
title
A RESOLUTION encouraging as a best practice the use of an individualized tenant assessment using the Fair Housing Act's discriminatory effects standard to avoid Fair Housing Act violations when criminal history is used as a screening criterion in the landlord screening process.
body
WHEREAS, the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has issued guidance in determining whether the use of criminal history by a housing provider to deny housing opportunities results in unjustified discriminatory effects, affirming that restrictions based on a characteristic not protected under Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968 (the Fair Housing Act), 42 U.S.C. 3601, et seq., such as criminal history, could still violate the Act if the burden of the restriction fell more often on members of one protected class over another, and stating that "[housing providers'] selective use of criminal history as a pretext for unequal treatment of individuals based on race, national origin, or other protected characteristics violates the Act"; and
WHEREAS, in September 2014 the City Council adopted Resolution 31546, in which the Mayor and Council jointly convened the Seattle Housing Affordability and Livability Agenda (HALA) Advisory Committee, resulting in the July 2015 Final Advisory Committee Recommendations and the Mayor's Housing Seattle: A Roadmap to an Affordable and Livable City, which outline solutions to address Seattle's housing affordability crisis; and
WHEREAS, in October 2015 the City Council adopted Resolution 31622, which declared the City Council's intent to expeditiously consider strategies recommended by the HALA Advisory Committee, including fair access to housing for people with criminal records because they face significant barriers to securing housing; and
WHEREAS, nearly 1/3 of the U.S. population has a criminal record, with an average of 650,000 persons released annually since 2004 from f...

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