Appleton bans sex-identity housing discrimination

Appleton becomes the third city in Wisconsin to adopt rules against housing discrimination based on gender identity.

The city’s diversity coordinator, Kathy Flores, says there are no state or federal protections for transgender individuals, so it’s up to communities to adopt rules. The Department of Housing and Urban Development says 17 states and 160 cities and counties nationwide prohibit housing discrimination based on both sexual orientation and gender identity. Madison and Milwaukee have similar protections in Wisconsin.

Post-Crescent Media says landlords who deny rentals to transgender individuals face a penalty of up to $10,000 under Appleton’s new ordinance.

Wisconsin became the first in the nation to adopt anti-discrimination protections for gay residents in 1982. But, Fair Wisconsin president Katie Belanger says transgender residents still experience discrimination when looking for housing.