NFHA Announces Settlement with Pacifica Senior Living Santa Fe

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

October 1, 2021

Contact: Izzy Woodruff | 202-898-1661 | IWoodruff@nationalfairhousing.org

NFHA Announces Settlement with Pacifica Senior Living Santa Fe

NFHA’s complaint alleged that Pacifica violated the Fair Housing Act by discriminating against deaf and hard of hearing seniors

Washington, D.C. — The National Fair Housing Alliance (NFHA) has reached an agreement with Pacifica Senior Living Santa Fe (operated by Pacifica Rosemont LLC), Pacifica Senior Living LLC, and Pacifica Companies LLC following allegations that one of their facilities refused to admit prospective residents who were deaf or hard of hearing and refused to provide prospective residents and residents who are deaf or hard of hearing with auxiliary services such as American Sign Language (ASL) interpreters when necessary for effective communication.

“NFHA’s recent research indicates that, at 58.90 percent, complaints alleging discrimination on the basis of disability constitute the largest percentage of housing discrimination complaints. That’s why today’s agreement is so significant,” said Lisa Rice, President and CEO of the National Fair Housing Alliance. “We are glad that Pacifica has agreed to take steps to bring its policies in line with the Fair Housing Act and ensure that prospective residents aren’t rejected simply because of auditory or other disabilities.”

Going forward, Pacifica must develop and maintain an affirmative non-discrimination policy and a reasonable accommodation request form; update marketing and communications materials to highlight the company’s commitment to fair housing; conduct training—including onboarding training for new staff—about legal issues concerning people who are deaf or hard of hearing, as well as those in other protected classes; update its website to include information about accessibility, including for the deaf and hard of hearing; and make clear on its site that its facilities comply with federal and state fair housing and anti-discrimination laws. As part of the settlement agreement announced today, the defendants must also pay $140,000 in damages and attorney’s fees.

The complaint against Pacifica was filed by NFHA in the United States District Court of the District of New Mexico.

NFHA was represented in this case by Andrew Rozynski of Eisenberg & Baum, LLP, and the investigation was supported in part by a grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

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The National Fair Housing Alliance (NFHA) is the country’s only national civil rights organization dedicated solely to eliminating all forms of housing and lending discrimination and ensuring equal opportunities for all people. Through its homeownership, credit access, tech equity, education, member services, public policy, community development, and enforcement initiatives, NFHA works to dismantle longstanding barriers to equity and build diverse, inclusive, well-resourced communities.

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