VT STRONG news – Burlington, VT: DOJ District of Vermont reports 8.28.2019 – The Office of the United States Attorney for the District of Vermont announced that it has resolved its inquiry into complaints that certain units at the Severance Corners housing complex were built with architectural barriers that made them inaccessible to people with disabilities in violation of the Fair Housing Act. The matter was handled by United States Attorney’s Office and the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice.

“If housing is not built to be accessible for people with disabilities, it is effectively unavailable to those people,” said U.S. Attorney Christina E. Nolan. “Particularly given the limited housing stock in this area, it is critically important that builders are complying with the Fair Housing Act’s requirements to create accessible housing. We commend Severance Corners Village Center, LLC, for quickly committing to make changes once the architectural barriers to accessibility were brought to its attention.”

Those changes included relocating thermostats and electrical switches, making the fitness room accessible, removing obstructions in certain kitchens, and relocating trash receptacles so that they were accessible to people with disabilities.

Civil Division Chief and Civil Rights Coordinator Jules Torti jointly handled this matter for the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Vermont, in partnership with attorneys from the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice.