Study documents housing discrimination in Vermont

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(Host) According to a new study, there’s a significant amount of racial discrimination in Vermont’s housing market. The study was conducted by the Fair Housing Project.

Using a grant from the federal government, the group sent test subjects into the real estate market. The study showed that people were treated differently based on their race or disability. There was a 48% incidence of racial discrimination and a 25% incidence of disability discrimination. Robert Appel is director of the Vermont Human Rights Commission:

(Appel) “I think it confirms that racism is alive and well here in Vermont, which is unfortunate. It coordinates with other data we’ve been collecting around how people of color have different experiences from the dominant culture here in Vermont.”

(Host) Appel is hoping that the release of this study will help reduce these types of discrimination:

(Appel) “The other hope we have, once the word spreads, that people in the realty business will reexamine their practices and try to increase their sensitivity and training around these issues.”

(Host) Appel says he’s also concerned that 63% of the real estate offices surveyed were inaccessible to people with disabilities.

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