The National Apartment Association (NAA) told legislators during Lobby Day (March 9) that the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Fair Housing Act were barriers to their industry’s efforts to provide housing and jobs. They asked legislators to “support legislation that provides a business owner with the opportunity to cure an alleged ADA deficiency prior to the initiation of a lawsuit.” The NAA supports a bill that, in its current form, would actually criminalize the process of making a complaint if not done exactly right. Clearly they have hopes of expanding this bill to include Fair Housing.
People with disabilities often have accessibility needs that only multi-family units meeting the design and construction requirements of the Fair Housing Act can meet. That is why people with disabilities have been very supportive of efforts of the apartment industry to build more multi-family housing. We know, and the National Apartment Association surely does, too, that the biggest barriers to housing construction isn’t the Americans with Disabilities Act, but the attitudes in many communities leading to NIMBYism – the “Not In My Back Yard” mindset. Yet this is curiously absent from the NAA’s policy priorities.
Please contact the local affiliate (politely!) and:
- Tell them that you are disappointed by NAA’s support of taking rights away from people with disabilities through the ADA notification bill, and ask if they support criminalizing people trying to stand up for their rights to equal access.
- Ask them to contact the NAA to say that they do not support this legislative priority.
- Want to go the Extra Mile? Many affiliates list their members. If the affiliate is resistant, contact the members and ask them question #1. Ask them to let the affiliate know that they do not support this.
It is possible that the person you speak to is not aware of what NAA is doing. Be prepared to summarize or to send a copy of the following information:http://www.advocacymonitor.com/ncil-responds-to-national-apartment-association-concerns-over-ada-notification/
The NAA press release can be found at:http://www.naahq.org/news/naa-reaches-all-535-congressional-offices