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Both the New York State and Suffolk County Human Rights Laws protects workers against discrimination or harassment based on their age, race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, military status, sex, disability, predisposing genetic characteristics, familial status, marital status, status as a victim of domestic violence, arrest record or conviction record, or sincerely held practice of religion.
Both laws also:
Use the below complaint form:
File a complaint: Visit our online Sivil Portal OR print out paper forms in English or Spanish
The County Executive is committed to preventing housing discrimination and promoting compliance with federal, state, and local fair housing laws. Training and education for residents and businesses on their rights and responsibilities under fair housing laws are necessary to combat fair and equitable housing impediments. Education and training opportunities and additional resources are listed below:
Suffolk County Fair Housing Law: Chapter §528-9
Suffolk County Human Rights Law: https://suffolkcountyny.gov/Departments/Human-Rights-Commission/Fair-Housing
NYS Fair Housing Guide PDF: https://dhr.ny.gov/system/files/documents/2022/05/nysdhr-fair-housing-guide-2021.pdf
NYS Guidance on Protections from Source of Income in Housing Under the New York Human Rights Law PDF: https://dhr.ny.gov/system/files/documents/2022/05/nysdhr-soi-guidance-2020.pdf
NYS Division of Human Rights Sexual Harassment in Housing PDF: https://dhr.ny.gov/system/files/documents/2022/05/nysdhr-housing-sexual-harassment.pdf
NYS Rights of Persons with Disabilities in Housing Trifold Pamphlet PDF: https://dhr.ny.gov/system/files/documents/2022/05/housing_disabilities.pdf
The first step in the process is Intake. Individuals who believe that they have been discriminated against may telephone, write, email, or come into our office and speak to an investigator about their situation. An extensive intake interview is conducted to obtain all the pertinent facts, explain our process and advise the complainant of available options.
The Commission always encourages early and ongoing settlement efforts, which benefits both parties.
Often, a situation arises that is not within our area of jurisdiction. In those situations, our staff members carefully evaluate the information. In other instances, the problem can be resolved without the need for a formal complaint. We have the flexibility to attempt to clarify the situation and/or to settle the matter by sending a letter of inquiry to the respondent and subsequent conversations with both parties.
When the situation has not been resolved or when the circumstances dictate, the intake investigator will draft a formal complaint for the complainant’s notarized signature. Depending upon the circumstances of the complaint, these formal charges may be filed under local, state, and/or federal law. The complaint is served on the respondent.
The respondent’s answer is usually sent to the complainant, along with a request for a written rebuttal. The complainant may submit a rebuttal in writing or meet with the investigator to give a verbal rebuttal. The rebuttal process can also be undertaken by telephone or by e-mail.
Every complainant is offered the opportunity to show that the alleged discriminatory basis was the reason for the respondent’s actions. However, the Commission ultimately determines the level of investigation necessary to address the issues raised.
The investigation includes securing relevant documents and obtaining other pertinent data necessary to address the charges. Relevant witnesses are contacted and interviewed about the circumstances surrounding the complaint. Their statements can be a valuable tool in ascertaining the validity of a charge.
When the investigation is completed, the information that has been gathered is carefully analyzed and documented, and the investigator prepares an investigative report along with recommended findings.
The executive director reviews the file and the investigative report, and if she agrees with the findings, she signs off on the report. The Commission’s recommended findings are then submitted to the NY State Division of Human Rights. If the State Division concurs with our “no probable cause” finding, then the case is closed. If they concur with a “probable cause” finding, the case is scheduled for a formal public hearing before an administrative law judge. The administrative law judge has the authority to compel the respondent to make restitution to the complainant, in whatever amount the judge deems appropriate.
However, in housing cases filed under the county’s local law, the Commission issues the final determination. Where probable cause has been determined, a hearing before an administrative law judge will be held at the county level.
If it is determined that there is no probable cause to believe that an unlawful act of discrimination has occurred, then the complaint is dismissed and the complainant is provided with information explaining the timeframes and process for filing an appeal.
If you have been a victim of discrimination, please file a complaint in either of the following ways:
Online Sivil Portal
Download pdf form in English
Download pdf form in Spanish
March 25, 2021 Fair Housing Flyer
April 6, 2021 Fair Housing Flyer
April 10, 2021 Fair Housing Flyer
April 27, 2021 Fair Housing Flyer
May 4, 2021 Fair Housing Flyer
May 6, 2021 Fair Housing Flyer
Phone: (631) 853-5480
PO Box 6100
Hauppauge, N.Y. 11788
Fax: (631) 853-5478
Hauppauge (Main) Office
H. Lee Dennison Building
100 Veterans Memorial Hwy
Hauppauge, N.Y. 11788
Hours: M-F 9:00AM - 5:00PM
Riverhead County Center
310 Center Drive
Riverhead, N.Y. 11901
Hours: by appointment only